Educational Support in Mal Pais, Costa Rica

by Global Vision International Charitable Trust
Vetted
Renovations underway!
Renovations underway!

Dear Supporters, 

The Mal Pais Education Project has had a great start to the year!

In January, we opened our doors at Only Love ELC for another school year. We are pleased to let you all know that we could offer full scholarships to new students as well as our existing students in the program. We could also continue our full scholarship program for students to attend Futuro Verde. This year we were delighted when Futuro Verde also kindly gave one of our graduating students from Only Love a full scholarship.

At the start of the year, we harvested our garden and have plans to build new raised beds as the current ones are now completely rotten. We were also busy painting classrooms and general maintenance and repair. Unfortunately, our playground and trampolines gave way to weather damage and general use and so we had to dismantle them for safety reasons. We were, however, able to salvage plastic slides and some plastic climbing pieces. We also salvaged some parts from the playground playhouses and my husband kindly repaired and reworked them so they could be placed on the ground, they are now in full use with all students enjoying them. We also made a rope walking line with a handline, which is hugely popular and fabulous for gross motor skills. We are now hoping to create a new play space with the salvaged parts and purchase 2 trampolines. A large amount of ground has been donating to the project and we intend to purchase a drainage tube – the idea is to place a large mound of ground on top of the drainage tube to create a play tunnel and then place the salvaged slides on top of the mound and plant grass and flowers to sustain the ground. We also hope to purchase materials to build a tree house and climbing wall.

In other news, Futuro Verde continued this year with a third of the school student body benefiting from either financial aid or full scholarship. Also, while waiting for corporate sponsorship for their capital campaign to build a green school. Futuro Verde are now busy building a music room, science lab and library/computer lab in accordance to regulations as and IB candidate school. New classes for the preschool are being built from a generous donation from a local family. Five classrooms are still tents – but will hopefully become classrooms as finances allow. In the garden at Futuro Verde, new raised beds have been built and a compost area is already in full use. As we are now in our dry season in Costa Rica it gives as plenty of time to prepare our seeds and soil ready for the rainy season. We are figuratively and literally sowing seeds for education.

We were busy last year updating our bilingual curriculum with lots of cross-curricular projects with opportunities for investigation and innovation. We also created a new curriculum for language, math, art, science, world culture physical education – including gymnastics and yoga, traditional dance, gardening and peace practice. We are now seeing the new students engaged and enjoying our new curriculum which makes all the extra effort so worthwhile.

Costa Rica’s, rich biodiversity offers us the blueprints to live in harmony and balance. Just as one plant offers another shade, we learn that we are all connected and our individual actions influence others and our planet.

By embracing our socially and culturally diverse community, we recognise the importance of global citizens and we are committed to teaching peace, sustainability and respect for all beings.

Thank you for your support! 

Sonya Danchik,
Founder and Director of Only Love ELC
V.P. for Futuro Verde

Arts and Crafts time!
Arts and Crafts time!
Garden space preperations
Garden space preperations
Happy Children!
Happy Children!

Dear Supporters, 

As the year draws to a close we reflect on 2016 and all we can be thankful for.

We have really had a wonderful year full of volunteers and service projects. We just hosted a group of IB students from Hautlieu School in Jersey U.K. who were completely inspiring. We have had an amazing group of students and teachers with lots of opportunities to learn and laugh together, we have hosted some fun and successful community fundraiser events and we finally had huge success with our vision for a world school when Futuro Verde was accepted as an IB candidate school earlier this year! 

There is a lot to be thankful for!

We are excited to see what the future holds for bilingual education, and education in general, in this rural area of Costa Rica. Hopefully, our capital campaign for the construction of Futuro Verde's new Eco-Campus will take off and we can start building soon. We have already started a school and student exchange program at Only Love and Futuro Verde. Futuro Verde has also hosted several teacher conventions for bilingual education and sustainability. We have some great things planned for 2017 and we are eager to learn and grow, as always!

We are currently busy planning our Kindergarten Graduation at Only Love ELC and preparing for our summer fair fundraiser and 2017 enrollment. What a great way to end a wonderful year!

As always we would like to thank you all for your interest and support with our project and we wish you all good health, love, laughter and a Happy New Year!

With Gratitude, 
Futuro Verde

Great Times with Service Groups
Great Times with Service Groups
Our growing garden
Our growing garden
Dream Catchers!
Dream Catchers!
Our happy students
Our happy students

Dear Supporters, 

We can't believe that already September is upon us! With the start of September, we have been busy preparing for the annual festivities for Costa Rican Independence Day.

All the students have been busy crafting and learning traditional dances for our presentation open to the community, friends and families of the students. We will start on the 14th of September, with a presentation and then we will all run with our construction paper torches to the Mal Pais public school and back. The "Running of the Torch" symbolizes the communication of Costa Rica's Independence between villages, when the message was sent via locals who ran from one village to another holding a lantern. We will then have a collaboration lunch, where all parties bring their own reusable plates, cups and forks - it is important for us to host green events and minimize waste.  The festivities go on into the night when the majority of the community walk the streets with school marching bands and holding our homemade lanterns to light up the parade.

The next day we will be in Cobano with Futuro Verde and all the other schools who take part in another parade of dancing, bands, marching with flags, horses and floats. It really is a wonderful 2 days of cultural immersion and celebration! Something we look forward to every year!

In other news, our corn is growing and is now almost taller than the students! We have also had success with the other native plants we started from seed. It's so fun to watch the garden grow and the students are always enthusiastic about gardening class.

Also growing are our student numbers and we have already opened up enrollment for 2017 with the same inclusive policy and philosophy of Only Love.

We hope to continue making a difference and thank all who help us make this possible. Much love to each and every one of you. 

The growing garden
The growing garden
Gardening in full swing!
Gardening in full swing!

Dear Supporters,

We recently hosted another service project, as usual, the volunteers were enthusiastic and worked up a good sweat. We are now in our rainy season and our gardening classes have already started. The service project volunteers helped us prepare the soil in the garden to plant corn with the students and we also did some weeding with the students, as well as the constant raking of leaves and clearing up of the half eaten mangoes that fall daily this time of year. It is important to really keep up the grounds maintenance during rainy season as Dengue is a serious threat and it only takes a very small amount of water for the mosquito larvae to thrive.

Since April we have been collecting seeds from local fruit, vegetables, plants and trees and the students are excited to get their hands in the soil and plant all the seeds and watch them grow. Gardening is such an important part of our curriculum as it teaches so much more than just planting seeds. The lessons learned are really valuable life skills - nurturing, diversity and collaboration to name a few. It's also pretty amazing having the opportunity to inspire young gardeners and help them realize how important Mother Earth is and our role as guardians of this beautiful planet. 

We have also nearly completed the outside play space that was started with previous service project volunteers and the students really love it! 

Last month we celebrated cultural diversity and it was really interesting to hear the student’s views on this topic. We had a lot of fun learning through discussion, games and art projects and the students have kept the topic alive via our weekly peace practices.

Our students at Futuro Verde are doing really well and the school is now an official IB candidate school with new land purchased and building permits ready for submission, to build the first green school in Costa Rica! We have started a capital campaign to help with the building costs that are projected at around $900, 000.

The vision of a world school here in our rural community is truly and quickly becoming a reality. We thank you all for your continued support.

Please know that you all make the difference.

Only Love

Sonya, Futuro Verde

Collecting seeds
Collecting seeds
Hard at work!
Hard at work!
The Service Learning team!
The Service Learning team!

Links:

Learning how to use chopsticks!
Learning how to use chopsticks!

Dear Supporter, 

Here at Futuro Verde we have a World Culture class that takes our students' on a journey all around the world. This year has been no different and we have already visited many places - China, Italy, Spain, Nicaragua and Australia. The students really enjoy learning about different countries, continents and cultures. 

For our young learners, we use hands-on activities like group investigation, traditional art, music and food. Students also learn about the geography and history, indigenous people, plants, animals and many other fun lessons to introduce global issues and awareness. It is important to link the students to the size and diversity of our planet and all living

We feel that is is vitally important to create a space where the students become aware of and learn about the size and diversity of our planet and all living beings. We encourage these young learners into peaceful and environmentally friendly practices. 

As our young learners grow, we hope they will continue to promote peace, harmony and sustainable practices. Sharing the love for one another and our beautiful planet earth. This is the future we wish to see and together through education, example and empathy we make the difference. Thank you all for your continued support, generosity and love. Much gratitude.

Thank you all for your continued support, generosity and love. Much gratitude.

With Gratitude,

Sonya

Hands-on learning is the best!
Hands-on learning is the best!
Only love for the whole world
Only love for the whole world

Links:

 

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Organization Information

Global Vision International Charitable Trust

Location: Exeter, Devon - United Kingdom
Website: http:/​/​www.gvi.org
Project Leader:
Kate Robey
Exeter, United Kingdom

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