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Empowering Guatemalan Women with Professional Jobs

by Kateri Tekakwitha Fund
Empowering Guatemalan Women with Professional Jobs
Empowering Guatemalan Women with Professional Jobs
Empowering Guatemalan Women with Professional Jobs
Empowering Guatemalan Women with Professional Jobs
Empowering Guatemalan Women with Professional Jobs
Empowering Guatemalan Women with Professional Jobs
Empowering Guatemalan Women with Professional Jobs
Empowering Guatemalan Women with Professional Jobs
Empowering Guatemalan Women with Professional Jobs
Empowering Guatemalan Women with Professional Jobs
Empowering Guatemalan Women with Professional Jobs
Empowering Guatemalan Women with Professional Jobs
Empowering Guatemalan Women with Professional Jobs
Empowering Guatemalan Women with Professional Jobs
Empowering Guatemalan Women with Professional Jobs
Empowering Guatemalan Women with Professional Jobs
Intern Group 2018
Intern Group 2018

Our plan was to place our 2019 interns in January.   We did not reach our funding goal, so have had to put the program on hold.  Young women have submitted their applications and are waiting to get started.  They want to join the other young women who have successfully completed their first work experiences and are working in their career.

Loyda who interned as a secretary at a school in Panajachel is now working there fulltime and attending the university to become a teacher.  Blanca has a position in the restaurant where she interned.  Francisca has a position teaching in a village outside her hometown of San Juan Comalapa.  Brenda is working at a government health clinic. Juana is putting her training as a bookkeeper to work as a bill collector for a cable company in Santa Clara la Laguna.  Rosa and Mishel are working as hospital practical nurses.  Silvia is working as a bank clerk.   Reina is working as a pre-school teacher in a government program and Leona is working at an accounting firm.  These young women all credit the Kateri Intern Program as preparing them to move ahead with jobs in their careers.

We have enough money right now to support one internWe need to reach our funding goal to move forward.  You can help us by adding to your own donation or contacting your friends and family to tell them about the Kateri Intern Program and encourage them to donate.  As we say, “Everything is possible with a little help from a FRIEND!”

Loyda with her Certification
Loyda with her Certification
Brenda and Candelaria
Brenda and Candelaria
Blanca
Blanca
Interns participating in Tax Workshop
Interns participating in Tax Workshop
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Aura
Aura

In July 2018, six young women finished their internships ready to seek permanent employement.  They all now have the work experience they need to support their applications for professional employment.  This month is high school graduation in Guatemala. That means that another group of young women are eagerly looking for job with the same obstacle - lack of work experience.  The Kateri Fund is gathering together the funding needed to again shepherd at least six young women through the process by providing them with year long internships.

Aura is one of the young women who is applying.  She graduated in October with a certificate as a bookkeeper.  She has overcome all the obstacles put in front of her up to now with her positive spirit and can do attitude.  Ahead of her is one more- finding a job.  The Kateri Fund wants to support her as she faces this challenge. 

Aura lives in a small village outside of the city of Comalapa.  Her family works in the fields growing vegetables to sell.  They have a few coffee plants to harvest.  They have had to struggle with the illness of the father of the family.  This made it difficult for them to do the work needed to survive.  Despite the difficulties, they have struggled to keep Aura and her six siblings in school. 

Aura and her mother are very close.  In 2006, she le As the oldest, she and her mother worked together to sustain the family during her father illness. In 2006, she left school after fifth grade.  Her mother needed her at home to help.  After six years, when her father recuperated, she returned to finish elementary school at 18 years old.  A difficult thing to do!  She was so much older than the other students, but with her positive attitude and happy spirit, she fit in.  She became someone the others looked up to.

Now at 23 years old, she has graduated!  She has a career!  All of her teachers have  predicted success for her in the future.  Hers is a story of persistence, a positive attitude, and a family that believes in her, but she still  has a difficult task ahead and needs support.  She will have to support herself and help her family, too, so cannot be without work for long.  For her and others, this often leads to taking a low paying job that does not use her skills.  A Kateri internship will help get her aclimated to the world of work and open a different path.

We plan on starting our next group of interns in January, but without your donations we will need to terminate the program. Giving Tuesday is coming up on November 27th.  GlobalGiving will be matching funds donated on that day. Aura and the other young women like her will benefit from your donation that day.  If we reach our goal of $10,000, we can start receiving applications and start the project on time in January.  Recurring donations always give the projects more security.  If you can budget a monthly donation toward these internships, you will be making it possible for these young women to lift themselves out of poverty and become independent professional women.

Aura(second right) at her  bookkeeping practicum.
Aura(second right) at her bookkeeping practicum.

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Loyda at Work
Loyda at Work

Two years ago, Loyda graduated from high school prepared to work as a bi-lingual secretary.  With no experience, she was not able to get a job in her career.  She needed to work, so took a job in an internet cafe that did not use her skills.  She started to save money to go to the university, thinking that more education would help her in her job search.  She was not earning very much, so that was hard. 

When she heard about the Kateri Tekakwitha Fund Intern Program, she realized it would help her get work experience and lead to a higher paying job where she would be working in her career, so she applied.  The Fund was able to place her as a school secretary.  The school where she is interning has many worshops that teach what makes for a good work environment and that is going to help her be successful when she gets a permanent position. 

With the money she earns as an intern with the Fund, she started at the university. Working in a school led her to change her career.  She decided to study to be a teacher at the university.  She is finding the university is introducing her to many new ideas which she really enjoys.

Read her June report below:

"My studies go very well.  The courses are very interesting.  They give us suggested topics and we have debates about  themes like how much has the government done for Guatemala and what ought we to do to change our country.  Saturday, June 16th, we are going to have our mid-term exams in three courses.  I am reviewing all that we have done so I can do well.

I am learning many things where I am an intern.  I have learned about the adaption of the curriculum.  I fill out forms for students with different disabilities.  For example: If a child doesn’t learn rapidly the form outlines how the educator would teach him.  I also participated in a workshop on professional sharing.  We learned how we could help each other in our work and how the work goes forward when there is help and communication.  The 29th of this month, there is another workshop about working in a team." 

Loyda is now finishing up her intern year and will be looking for a permanent job.  The Kateri Fund Coordinator has helped her prepare for this with workshops on job seeking skills.  She will help and encourage Loyda as she starts her search.

Cataloging Books
Cataloging Books
Recording Reports
Recording Reports
School Where Loyda Works
School Where Loyda Works
Filing
Filing
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Odalia at Work
Odalia at Work

Odalia is interning in the Finance Department of her local government.  Her high school training is as a bookkeeper, so this is a good placement for her, so she can put into practice what she has learned and at the same time gain the experience she needs to apply for a permanent job.  Below is her February report on her work experience.  She can tell you in her own words how things are going.

Dear Friends,

It is a pleasure to be able to greet you and to wish you well in your daily work, hoping that I find you in good health.

All is going well for me in my internship.  My experience is growing each day. With my effort; I am learning many things.  One is how to write checks.  This is important because for the person to cash the check, it has to be authorized in the system.  I have studied the system to understand all the branches to be able to write the check with more confidence and security.

This month, I reviewed the paperwork of the whole year.  The auditor will come and we have to verify that all the paperwork is in order so there will not be any problems. 

I also am helping in the women’s office.  This office helps all of the women in the area.  It is a government program.  As those in charge have to leave the office to see different people, I stay there and am in charge until they return.

I am very content in this place where I am doing my internship because all is going well. I thank you for the grand opportunity you are giving me.  I hope that all continues to go well as it has until now.

I take leave of you thanking you for the attention you have given me.

 Att: Odalia

Odalia and all the interns are working hard and gaining the work experience they need to apply for a job.  A lack of work experience is the biggest obstacle for the young women when they start looking for work.  The experience you are supporting with your donation is crucial for them. Thank you for investing your hard-earned money on our cause. Please consider telling your friends and family about our project - share the link on your blogs or social networks, use the tell-a-friend feature on the project page to email your network, or just bring us up in conversation. You know your friends and family best, so use your own words - tell them why you chose our project and what it means to you.

Thank you again for all you have done to help Odalia and the other interns!

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Glenda
Glenda

Glenda is meeting the challenges of a new experience.  She is typical of the six young women in the intern program. She graduated from high school with a certificate to teach preschool. She was not able to find a job. The first thing perspective employers asked was if she had experience. When she said that she did not, the conversation ended.

Through the Fund, she secured an internship at a non-profit that works with handicapped children. Working with the students is a challenge. The children have many problems both physical and emotional.   The advantage is that she is receiving classes in signing and techniques for working with students who have behavior problems. She said that it is difficult to work with the students, but she likes it. Little by little, she is learning how to handle her new experience.

This year, Carmela is coordinating all of our Education Fund Programs that includes the Intern Program. We are continuing it with grants from Mary’s Pence, the Quail Roost Foundation, and support from you, our Global Giving Donors. The six you women in the program are in work situations where they will get the experience they need to secure their first permanent job. At their monthly meeting, they have talked about the labor situation in Guatemala, had a talk about workplace attitudes, and a talk from a former intern about her experiences. These all add to their work skills and personal development. It prepares them for a better future.

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Organization Information

Kateri Tekakwitha Fund

Location: Pacifica, CA - USA
Website:
Project Leader:
Kay Sweeney
Pacifica, California United States
$6,960 raised of $10,000 goal
 
269 donations
$3,040 to go
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