A student in Panabaj wears his new uniform
In Guatemala, failing gym class means you have to repeat an entire grade. For those students that have no option but to participate in jeans and knock-off crocs or sandals, this can be a problem.
The way we see it, if a student can pass each of his academic classes but gets held back because he didn’t have the right clothes to exercise, then something isn’t quite right. So this past month, as a benefit of our sponsorship project, we supplied 46 students with uniforms and shoes for their physical education class.
According to Johanny, our Primary Education Scholarships Project Manager, “parents who before might have had to purchase shoes and new clothes can now use that money for food for the family.”
Plus, the appropriate gear allows students to perform to the best of their abilities, thus giving them the opportunity to compete in yearly “Olympic Games” held between different schools, municipalities, and departments in Guatemala. If a student is particularly talented at a sport, he or she can join the school team to compete against other schools across the country. For students around Santiago, this is a unique opportunity to see the world outside of their neighborhoods and communities.
We’re hoping that some of our scholarship students this year will be able to join in the Olympics. If the cost is only that of the right shoes and a uniform, we’re happy to help.