COVID-19 emergency online education in Colombia

by Fundacion ABLE
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COVID-19 emergency online education in Colombia
COVID-19 emergency online education in Colombia
COVID-19 emergency online education in Colombia
COVID-19 emergency online education in Colombia
COVID-19 emergency online education in Colombia
COVID-19 emergency online education in Colombia
COVID-19 emergency online education in Colombia
COVID-19 emergency online education in Colombia
COVID-19 emergency online education in Colombia
COVID-19 emergency online education in Colombia
COVID-19 emergency online education in Colombia
COVID-19 emergency online education in Colombia
COVID-19 emergency online education in Colombia
COVID-19 emergency online education in Colombia
COVID-19 emergency online education in Colombia
COVID-19 emergency online education in Colombia
COVID-19 emergency online education in Colombia
COVID-19 emergency online education in Colombia
COVID-19 emergency online education in Colombia
COVID-19 emergency online education in Colombia
COVID-19 emergency online education in Colombia
Graduation day fifth grade
Graduation day fifth grade

Hola amigos!

As we write this report, 202 children walk around our school feeling so happy about being back to their classrooms, library, computer lab, park and all the fun of learning. It was two long years of waiting and now we go back to the new normal. We all have to get used to school again, learn the rules, get healthy habits, remember that we are not alone in this vast world. We wrapped up 2021 with 2 wonderful events, one of them was English Day which you can watch here. We also graduated 20 students to middle school. We are so proud of their achievements!

In our last report we told you a little about a project that started last April in the youth correctional centers of Cali where we have been teaching English to boys and girls who are in confinement. Through this project, a young man like Jhojan develops his linguistic skills and intercultural ability to reimagine his life using another language. There is a Persian proverb that goes: A new language is a new life, and so we believe. In English class they learn songs with empowering messages, they learn about world leaders, they discuss about movies, they read, they interact with other partners using respectful language. All of this creates a positive atmosphere for learning and thus thriving despite their past or their context.

Most of this youth are victims of the armed conflict in Colombia, they come from empoverished neighborhoods and broken familes. One of them video calls her mom who is also imprisoned. Another one committed a crime against his uncle who murdered his father when he was a little five-year-old boy. One of them uses drugs since she was 6. Poignant stories like these surround their lives. Through the opportunities they get while in confinement such as finishing their school, learning arts, music, English, and having therapy, they can nurture themselves and build the power they need to face the world again and hopefully turn their back on crime.

Once again, thank you for your support and a big shoutout to our 7 monthly donors who have embraced this mission as their own. Together we are changing the course of many lives of children and youth through education.

Blessings to you all.

Teacher Lily

Kindergarten student at her graduation ceremony
Kindergarten student at her graduation ceremony
English day
English day
Our children's choir singing A million dreams
Our children's choir singing A million dreams
China :)
China :)
We love our team
We love our team
Smile!
Smile!
Students in the youth prison
Students in the youth prison
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Second grader and her crazy hair
Second grader and her crazy hair

Hello there!

This is a short report to share with you the fun we had during crazy hair day. This year we dedicated a whole week to activities related to art, culture, sports and joy! One day we walked to a hill nearby, we had guest artists, did exercise, danced and more. One of our favorite days was Crazy Hair Day and talent show, where students used their creativity to style their hair and come up with different performances that let us see their talents.

We come to the conclusion that our children are so blessed and talented! We want to continue to be the place where they grow and nurture themselves.

For now, we are getting ready to celebrate English Day! Please tune in on Friday November 19th through our Youtube channel at 9:00 A.M. Colombian time and you will experience first hand the beauty of listening to our children speak English, dance and sing in front of their families and community. We hope you can join us!!

Next project report we will tell you about a beautiful project we started last April teaching English to youth in prison. We are very excited to share with you how truly is that a new language is a new life.

Finally, we want to apologize for the inconvenience we had last month regarding our project page. We had a little problem in the platform but now we're good and ready to receive more of your support. Please continue to share about us with family and friends. We really appreciate it.

Best regards from the land of el Encanto (have you seen the movie yet? It is inspired in our country!) 

Love,

Teacher Lily

Performing for their classmates
Performing for their classmates
Bugs!!
Bugs!!
Nursery students playing in recess time
Nursery students playing in recess time
Music class
Music class
Pajama day at the library
Pajama day at the library
I made a rabbit!
I made a rabbit!
The cutest cousins ever!
The cutest cousins ever!
Our neighborhood in the background
Our neighborhood in the background
A walk to the hill
A walk to the hill
By the lake
By the lake

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Messages of peace from Colombian children
Messages of peace from Colombian children

Dear friends and supporters,

Over the last couple months our community of donors has grown to nearly a hundred and we can't be more thankful, especially now that not only COVID but the social burst in Colombia have made things harder for schools to run normally.

The National Strike in Colombia started on April 29th and it last almost two months. With it came a social burst that ended in violence from both protesters and the Police and later on danger in the streets. Siloé, our neighborhood, was one of the epicenters of the manifestations so our children and their families had to make it through nights of shootings, robberies, tear gases, lockdowns and more. With the help of our group of psychologysts and volunteers we provided emergency attention to children and teachers in order to cope with the emotional burden of the moment. Thank God we were able to overcome and now the children are back at school enjoying the opportunity to share with friends and learn.

In the meantime we started the program to teach English in the youth prisons of Cali. It has been such a powerful project to help youth find their voice through the chance they are given to learn another language. None of them have finished high school and some are just learning how to read and write. Interaction in class helps them to become better communicators, team workers and fairer players. We firmly believe that all they need is a second chance to realize they can do way more than just crime. This work inspires us even more to continue to work with our children at the school because we can prevent from an early age that a child falls in the traps of poverty that could lead them to jail.

Our children prepared a beautiful song by singer Martha Gómez, dedicated to Colombia and our peace. Enjoy the song and the pictures that as usual we love to share with you.

Best regards,

Teacher Lily 

Juan Pablo designed his own notebook
Juan Pablo designed his own notebook
A message in English class
A message in English class
Cute preschoolers
Cute preschoolers
Community cooking pot during National Strike
Community cooking pot during National Strike
Elections of school president
Elections of school president
Teacher Adarley teaching English in a youth prison
Teacher Adarley teaching English in a youth prison

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Happy girl at our computer lab
Happy girl at our computer lab

Dear friends,

Our school year started in February and we are so excited to let you know that we are LITERALLY BACK AT SCHOOL!! It is such a great joy to see our students walk through the entrance and wave their parents good-bye while they head to their classrooms. 

Despite all the setbacks in 2020 because of COVID, we managed to overcome the situation and planned things out to make it possible to return to school three times a week for all K-5 grades. We equipped five classrooms with TV, internet connection and audio system in order to continue to use technology and stream classes for students who cannot come to school and we transformed our facilities so that classrooms would have more space between desks. Moreover, we trained our community in the protocol to keep safe from the virus.

It's already March and our plans for 2021 don't stop here. We have near 200 students enrolled this year in our school but we have two more projects to launch. One is our CULTURAL CENTER, a house that belonged to our founders family and was donated to be restored and turned into a hub of culture and arts not only for the children enrolled in our school but also for children and youth from the community. It will be called LA CASA AZUL so please look forward to a next report under that name.

The other project is hand to hand with the State to start teaching English in our city's Youth Detention Centers as a means to transform their time in confinement into a period of learning and growth on the way to freedom. A proverb says that learning a new language is having the opportunity to start a new life and we hope to witness this with our own eyes.

Thank you very much for your support.

Thank you very much for not giving up on us.

Thank you very much for feeling our mission.

We are ALL making this possible.

We pray for your families, health and well-being and may this year grow in abundance of life to all of you.

¡Saludos desde Colombia!

In English class now at school
In English class now at school
English class at home
English class at home
What can we say about happiness
What can we say about happiness
At the playground
At the playground
We welcomed our new English teacher from Bogota
We welcomed our new English teacher from Bogota
The school cat is also happy to see children again
The school cat is also happy to see children again
La Casa Azul, CULTURE in the heart of the hills
La Casa Azul, CULTURE in the heart of the hills
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Gabi is excited about her new tablet
Gabi is excited about her new tablet

Dear Friends,

Four months ago we reached out to you asking for help. We were in the middle of the pandemic trying to keep children enrolled in school and learning from home. But they had no access to computers or internet connection. Schools in our community were experiencing closures, up to 50% students dropouts and many teachers were being left without jobs.

But we knew we had to act and you JOINED US! We launched our campaign to raise funds to bring tablets, computers and internet connection to the homes of students whose families could not afford it. You responded rapidly and we purchased the first 6 tablets, then local companies donated more tablets and family and friends in the city started bringing in their used computers. It was amazing! Every time we called a mother to tell her we had a tablet for her daughter, she cried and laughed at the same time. 

All in all, we gave 26 TABLETS, 10 COMPUTERS and access to internet connection during six months for 12 families (that helped not only our students but their older siblings, cousins or parents going to school as well). In order to maximize our impact, we collected the devices this month in order to give them maintenance and hand them out again in January for the start of a new school year.

Thanks to YOU, our school dropout rate didn’t even reach 5% and we can gladly announce that our 160 students proudly finished their school year and are ready to start 2021! It is still sad though to see public schools closed and thousands of children in Colombia who missed a whole year of learning.

Last week we celebrated English day virtually. All of our children participated with songs, plays, and other performances showing us how much they learned this year. We are so proud of them!! You can see the streaming of our English Day in our Youtube Channel. 

We also want to share pictures of our graduation ceremony for fifth grade students. We wish them the best of lucks in their secondary education.

What can we say except THANK YOU! We pray your homes and lives be blessed, healthy and full of love. This year taught us we are in this world TOGETHER and only by walking together we can overcome. Whatever 2021 brings, let us be united and thankful for having the gift of life that we many times take for granted.

God bless,

Teacher Lili

Education Equity means having access to technology
Education Equity means having access to technology
Tablet + internet access for 6 months for a family
Tablet + internet access for 6 months for a family
A smile says it all
A smile says it all

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Organization Information

Fundacion ABLE

Location: Cali - Colombia
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @lafontainecali
Project Leader:
Lilibeydy Manrique
Cali, Colombia
$19,844 raised of $40,000 goal
 
285 donations
$20,156 to go
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