Dec 18, 2013

Hurrah! Esperanza and her classmates have graduated!

Graduating youth proudly hold their diplomas
Graduating youth proudly hold their diplomas

Dear supporters,

Esperanza and her peers—the Limitless Horizons Ixil youth in their last year of middle school—have all graduated! These youth are a smashing success. In fact, this year LHI youth of all ages received higher average grades than ever before. Nine of the 11—including Esperanza—will be continuing as Limitless Horizons Ixil Youth Development Program participants and scholarship recipients in 2014 as they start high school. In Guatemala, one normally selects a career focus in high school, and these youth have selected a variety of high school programs. Some will be studying in programs only offered outside of their hometown, and some will be staying in Chajul. They are so excited to be embarking on this next great step. The group put their heads together collectively and wrote this message:

“This year, we have the opportunity to graduate from middle school and go on to high school. Each of us has chosen a different career (high school field of study) because we want to continue achieving our dreams and have success in our future lives. Studying in high school is the base of every good education. We will each be going off to different schools. We are very proud of all that we have accomplished, thanks to the support of each one of you.”

Happy holidays and thank you from Esperanza and her peers!

Warm Regards,

Danielle

P.S. Below is a drawing from the graduating students. The caption says, “In the sunset of every beautiful evening is all the peace of the earth. It’s as beautiful as the hope of life.”


Drawing and signatures by graduates
Drawing and signatures by graduates
Dec 18, 2013

Field day for Chajul library members to play and learn!

Marilu and Edilma guide the children on their way
Marilu and Edilma guide the children on their way

Dear supporters,

Last week marked the end of “Reading Adventures,” a special 2 months of vacation activities in the Limitless Horizons Ixil Saber Sin Límites Community Library in Chajul. (In Guatemala, the long vacation between school years starts in October). Every day, kids flocked to the library to read together and read alone. The kids who came regularly were rewarded last week with a special gift—a book all of their own, the first many of these little ones have ever owned!

One of the most memorable and exciting activities during Reading Adventures was our “field day.” Sixty-six young kids from the library joined hands (each with a partner) and moved en mass down the dirt road to a local school’s big empty field, with our librarian Marilú, program & library manager Edilma, volunteer Meg, a group of older Youth Development Program participants, and myself helping to supervise and organize. All we needed was each other, the great outdoors, and a few activities. Between smatterings of rain underneath a cloudy sky, we had ourselves some fun.

Marilú and Meg had planned a treasure hunt for the day—an educational treasure hunt. We were divided into 5 groups with a staff member or volunteer, an older LHI youth, and 14 kids in each group. My team was “the insects.” We hunted for a box of questions in the field, and opened it to discover questions about insects! All of our little teammates put our heads together to write down names of different insects, parts of their bodies, and places where the insects could be found. When we rejoined the larger group, each team took a turn presenting our discoveries—and each of our kids performed a demonstration of a type of insect they had found in the field. Our 2 tiniest members—sisters, smaller than all the other children, who had stuck close together all day—embodied little ants and wandered around the large circle of kids “attacking” the other little ant children! Screams and giggles made their way around the crowd.

It is your support of our library that allows us to make educational activities like field day happen. Your donations also allow us to provide training resources and mentorship to our librarians and local staff so that they can develop their own expertise and creativity to nurture our children. Your gift allows us to continue giving these kids a space for expression, opportunities to grow and develop, and the chance to create fun memories.

Happy holidays and thank you, from the children and library members in Chajul.

Warm regards,

Danielle 

LHI youth scholar Carmen and me with "the insects"
LHI youth scholar Carmen and me with "the insects"
"The insects" prepare to perform
"The insects" prepare to perform

Links:

Sep 18, 2013

9 youth are considering career possibilities. Thanks to YOU!

Youth graduating from middle school this year
Youth graduating from middle school this year

Dear friends,

Thank you so much for supporting the youth of genocide-torn Chajul through your support of Limitless Horizons Ixil's project on GlobalGiving. You're helping to provide scholarships and support services for hard-working youth from families in need as they strive to make it through middle school and high school. We're writing to let you know that because of YOUR support, the youth graduating from middle school this year, including Esperanza and her classmates, are thinking about their career options as they apply to high school programs!

Over the last few weeks, our local program staff Edilma and Verónica have been visiting the families of all of our youth who will be entering high school next year. In Guatemala, the school year starts in January and each student selects a high school based on a career focus, or pursues a general college-prep degree. Here's an update on a couple of the youth from this class:

EsperanzaEsperanza still dreams of becoming a music teacher, but she's also interested in other types of education. No matter what, she wants to continue beyond high school with a university education to best prepare for her future career. She's looking at several high schools outside of Chajul that could offer her a general college-prep degree.

Francisco MagdielFrancisco Magdiel's grades are through the roof. His family owns a store a few doors down from the LHI office, but the world is his oyster and he is considering high schools where he can specialize in accounting. We know he has the smarts for it!

Esperanza, Francisco Magdiel, and all their classmates are thinking about their futures. Because of the war and limited economic resources, most of their parents never had the chance to graduate from primary school. And these 9 youth have the opportunity to pursue a productive career path in high school and beyond. It's hard to fully convey just how incredible this opportunity is for them. Thank you for making it possible.

As always, please reach out if you have any questions or are interested in getting involved as a youth sponsor. And please make sure you're on our email list so you can stay on top of general LHI news! 

With gratitude and hope,

Danielle Huffaker, International Coordinator, Limitless Horizons Ixil

 
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