The kids came by to lend us a hand!
GVI has been working in Quepos since 2011 and concentrates mainly on the struggling communities, particularly working with the children and young people of these areas.GVI has decided to focus its efforts almost entirely on El Cocal in 2016, as it is the area that needs the most help.
El Cocal struggles due to being a partly illegal and isolated settlement, many inhabitants suffering from drug and alcohol abuse. There is also a high number of immigrant families from surrounding Latin America countries, which has led to problems with racial tension. Lots of the community are employed in the fishing industry, which means work is unreliable, so families aren’t used to saving money, just spending what they have straight away.
El Cocal is often ignored by the residents of the surrounding areas, the bustling Quepos and the thriving Manuel Antonio. Despite El Cocal being populated for decades, the only official government building is the school, the partner of GVI. This is why GVI wants to build a community center to be a place for children to come and learn in a safe and fun environment outside of the school, as well as a place where the adults can come together, make new friends and grow as a community. We spent three weeks designing, building and decorating a space the whole community can use.
Recently GVI volunteers spent three weeks designing, building and decorating a space the whole community can use using funds donated by you!
What impact did the donation have?
The children from this community attend the school for about 4 hours a day and normally spend the rest of the day either in the street, playing video games or watching the tv. One of our aims is to offer the kids a safe space where they can play and learn. Hence, we are building a community center with enough space to have workshops, space where they can play around and learn about growing their own food and healthy eating habits.
The land where this community is being built belongs to the community, and the center has been requested by them. The center will also be used for weddings, meetings, festivals. It will also have a kitchen that the local community will be able to use and sell products to generate an income. Likewise, the community center has an outside bathroom which could be rented to the people visiting the beach, as one of the long terms aims is to change the image of El Cocal from being a neglected and dangerous town to a place where families can go to enjoy the beach.
In addition, the community center aims to also be an example of sustainable organic agriculture, starting by having a compost area, local products and then have the people replicating it in their backyards, for eventually sell the products and get some income from it too.
We look forward to sharing more detailed news about what we have done in the next report!
Thank you for your donations, which have made the dream of a community center a reality!
GVI Costa Rica
Starting to come together!
The volunteers who did all the hard work!