We are all living through extremely difficult and complicated times across the world due to the Covid-19 virus. In Guatemala it is certainly no exception, where we have been living under a state of prevention and mitigation since the 16th March. We still do not know when we will be able to return to the streets and resume our normal daily lives, so we are all experiencing very disconcerting times.
At Aula Mágica we have been keeping up to date with the domestic circumstances of everyone who is part of the Aula Mágica family - this consists of a total of 27 male and females from across rural regions of Guatemala: Huehuetenango, El Quiché, Sololá and Retalhuleu. The families of our Facilitators typically work in the fields or are involved in the informal economy working for example as construction workers, gardeners and housekeepers. Unfortunately, work has declined considerably and many people have become unemployed.
Aula Mágica has sought ways to support each of the Facilitators. This week, each Facilitator received a parcel of products containing personal hygiene products and nutritional food. As well as this, they have also continued to receive their monthly stipends. Currently we are also trying to source funds to be able to provide food for our children and their families, so we hope to be supporting them as well.
If you would like to collaborate with us in order to allow us to carry on supporting our Facilitators, our children and their families in Guatemala we would be really grateful. This is possible through Aula Mágica’s GlobalGiving link:
We send our best wishes to everyone and hope that you and your loved ones keep safe and well.
The Aula Mágica team
We hope that you are all safe and well during this difficult time faced by everyone across the world.
On Monday 16th March all activities of our program were suspended completely to ensure the safety of our children, facilitators and teachers.
On the 13th March the Guatemalan Government had announced the first case of Coronavirus in the country. Across Guatemala, all educational, social and cultural activities were then suspended, as well as all public and private transport services. It was only possible for people to leave the house in order to purchase essential food supplies or for an emergency.
From Sunday 22nd March, a curfew was imposed, forcing everyone to stay at home between the hours of 4pm and 4am.
The situation is very worrying, saddening and a difficult for everyone, but especially so for families with members that do not have a secure job, a job in the formal sector or those that have to work on a daily basis in order to be able to provide food for their families.
Currently across the country, we have 80 positive cases of Coronavirus and this figure is increasing on an hourly basis. Of these existing cases, 17 people are in a stable condition and on the road to recovery. Up until now we believe that the government has acted appropriately, especially bearing in mind the limited resources at their disposal and when comparing their actions with those of other countries from our continent.
We do not have a date for when we will be able to resume our activities, but we really hope that the serious situation that we are facing passes as soon as possible.
In our program we continue providing each of our facilitators and teachers with their stipend, as we realise that now, more than at any other time, they are in need of a financial income to be able to buy the basic necessities in order to live. We are extremely appreciative of the support received from Miracles in Action, Go Philanthropic, Project Quetzal, the Mathile Institute, as well as the vital support from individuals who are supporting us unconditionally at these difficult moments – a big thank you to everyone!
We want to have all of our team united at this time with the hope of us being ready and prepared for when things return back to normality. Each facilitator will be studying different types of educational material from their homes during this period.
In the communities where our classes are located, the majority of these communities do not have Internet and phone signal is limited. Up until now, our facilitators and children are all well. From the bottom of our hearts we really wish to return to our classrooms and get our program up and running again when the conditions have improved.
If you would like to make a financial donation to our families in order to help them feed themselves, this would be extremely appreciated at this time of crisis, and you can do this through this: https://www.globalgiving.org/dy/v2/checkout/billing/
We send our very best wishes to everyone and hope you are all well!
Here at Aula Mágica we have been very busy preparing for the beginning of 2020 academic year. With more than 30 Facilitators coming from different communities. The classes will commence once again in our classrooms and we are really excited to be with our students once again!
Each year offering our program is a considerable challenge which has led us to think a great deal about what we do and to find the best strategies in order to benefit our pre-school children and families who have a great need. They live in remote communities and are often isolated and suffer from limited services and support.
In the last few years we have received committed support from various marvellous organizations who believe in and share our mission: Miracles in Action, Go Philanthropic, Mathile Institue, Project Quetzal, MAIA, Adesju, as well as others.
One of the strategies for these upcoming months is to collaborate with as many organizations who share similar aims to ours, which will allow us to expand our work to other areas and regions of the country where we are not currently working. This will allow us to have a larger positive impact in each program that we offer.
Collaborating with other organisations will allow us to reach out to more communities with needs in areas of health and pre-school education. We are really hopeful that various organizations join with us so that we can work towards the same objective.
We are very proud to have an excellent program focusing on high quality pre-school education in rural communities. We also have our Mothers’ Groups for each classroom. They meet regularly and they are our source of strength. Each Facilitator with the support of the Regional Coordinator cover themes such as: early learning, hygiene and nutrition, which are vital topics for every home. There exists a great amount of trust amongst everyone involved which is essential for the success of this program.
We look forward to keeping you updated with the progress of our program throughout the year.
Best wishes and until the next time!
Aula Mágica Guatemala!
We have reached the end of another year of classes, and this year we have had 249 children! At the moment they are on holiday in their homes for a few weeks and will return to school in January, 2020, for the new academic year.
This academic year has certainly been very valuable and productive. All of the children who have participated in our program have received good quality teaching which has been adapted to their particular environment.
Our 31 facilitators, who are also young leaders of their communities, have done an incredible job through their teaching of each of our children. This has taken place alongside with the great work carried out by our Coordinators in each of the departments where we work.
Throughout the year, there has been a great amount of collaboration between the children, Facilitators, Coordinators, community leaders, parents of the children, and the Directors of the schools in each of the communities. We are extremely grateful of everyone involved, as this has allowed our children to receive an education that will serve as a sound base for their future education as well as their social development.
We are delighted about having worked this year in four different departments of Guatemala, these being, El Quiche, Huehuetenango, Solola and Retalhuleu, and this has covered twenty-two very rural and remote communities.
This is very valuable for us as it means that we are achieving an important objective of supporting, and offering pre-school education to children aged four, five and six years of age, who would not normally have had access to an education.
It is also important to mention the significant role played by our donors, since without them this would not be possible. We are truly grateful to our treasured donors, and especially grateful of the confidence that they have shown in our program and what we are doing. A big thank you to you all!
It’s always a great pleasure to share with you what has been happening with our programme, Aula Mágica! It’s also really positive for us to know that you enjoy to hear about what we do, and this provides us with even more motivation to drive us forwards.
In recent weeks, we received different visits to our programme. Two visitor groups spent time with us and shared time with our children. We were visited by the group, Go Philanthropic, as well as the Reed family from the United States of America. These groups as well as others that support us, are an integral part of our programme and we are delighted and grateful that the Reed Family and Go Philanthropic took the time to be with us. Can you guess who were really excited by these particular visits? The children of course! After an initial shyness shown by the children, the visitors were received by the children with a lot of love and affection. Each child was eager to show what they had learnt and illustrate their talents, and every child was excited to share time with each of our visitors.
For our programme, Aula Mágica, it is important that our visitors can see the work that we do in our classrooms with each of our children and in each community which we support. It is also important that our visitors see the educational skills and knowledge that we provide to each of our children, and the significant changes that can be made through education in rural Guatemala.
We really appreciate the visitors for the time that they spent with us and we hope that they can return to Guatemala in the near future and of course visit our Magic Classrooms in Guatemala!
Our best wishes to everyone!
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