Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan

by Tijiohtli, AC
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Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Quality education for the youth in Cuetzalan
Student working in Tiltik our visual arts workshop
Student working in Tiltik our visual arts workshop

In two years that this project has been open there have been a lot of changes, and we have evolved into a series of projects that have grown big enough to stand them apart. As we told you in one of our earlier reports, we had to close down our housing and eating facilities. From there on, we also had to separate the arts and crafts workshops (visual arts and textile arts) from our high school project, and instead open them up to other high school students, or even to youth that wasn't studying anything. Recall that we also opened up a store in the city of Puebla, and that we have been trying to sell our productions there, and because the sales weren't enough, we also started selling other people's productions in our store and online.

Last year we also opened up a project to work with preschool children, helping public preschools improve the service they give the children, through bambú toys and playing areas, and through a toy library where we can collect more materials and lend them to schools or to different families.

Then on december we pioneered organizing an intercultural festival in a community in Cuetzalan del Progreso called San Miguel Tzinacapan. We invited several musicians that sing in indigenous tongues, and also muralist painters that along with the students in Tiltik, painted various monumental works in public spaces. 

Finally, our original project for high school students through the online platform of TEC de Monterrey ("Prepanet") still also stands.

Because what we do has evolved and grown, we will be closing down this project in globalgiving, and opening up different pages and reports for each project. So please visit us soon and learn from our projects! In the meantime, you can either visit: 

Tiltik: our visual arts workshop

or

Cuauhtlatoatzin, our online high school for Náhuat Youth

Thank you for all your support!! We couldn't have done it without you!! 

--- 

High school student wearing a Design by Tonaltzi
High school student wearing a Design by Tonaltzi
Our high school building in San Andres Tzicuilan
Our high school building in San Andres Tzicuilan
High school students in their online platform
High school students in their online platform
Our team doing teamwork
Our team doing teamwork

Links:

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Inauguration of "Death & Life" in Puebla
Inauguration of "Death & Life" in Puebla

MURAL PAINTING IN COMMUNITIES

One week of various national artists doing mural painting in Xocoyolo, Cuetzalan

Artists all over Mexico came to share their colors and art with people from Xocoyolo, who were wanting to mark a celebration to mark the opening of a "Centro de Bienestar" in their town. They offered food, beverages and lodging, and the artists in return gave thier best effort to make the walls vibrant with color and joy. Look at the results virtually, or come visit by! 

One weekend of local artists doing mural painting in San Miguel Tzinacapan

Artist Luis Zanik, and Tiltik's friend Miguel Mendoza, in conjunction with a collective of young artists named Talnamikilis Espacio Literario Cuetzalan, collaborated together and painted this mural, in the framework of a photo exposition organized by Miguel Mendoza in San Miguel Tzinacapan. 

Zanik travels to Guatemala, to share mural painting

Artist Luis Zanik travelled to Guatemala in order to participate in one week of mural painting in the frame of the painting of the mural "Cultural resistance"; [to signify that] our cultures resist dying, with wisdom through our elders preserving our ancestral traditions, in a country with voice and strength, organized by Artes Mazatenango.

 

WORKSHOPS

Linocut engraving Workshop by "Taller Mena" 

Friends from the workshop "Taller Mena" shared with us a workshop with linocut engraving with colors, and also a Mural in Xocoyolo. You can view pictures from the workshop here.

Stencil Workshop by "Karas Urbanas" 

Stencil Artist from Nezahualcóyot living in Xico, Veracruz, Karas Urbanas, came to visit and gave us a superb stencil workshop. With it our house artists managed these lovely works.

Desparadigmas workshop for concious tourism

Our friends from "Desparadigmas" came to Tiltik to take a brief linocut workshop.Their crew were tourists looking for concious travelling, and local families looking for the same. All the crew really enjoyed this workshop.

 

EXPOSITIONS:

Exposition in El MUZA (Museum in Zacatlán de las Manzanas, Puebla)

Luis Zanik travelled to Zacatlán de las Manzanas, and was present in the inauguration of the 11th Regional Exposition of the Museum of Zacatlán de las Manzanas. 

You van view Luis Zanik speaking about his work here.

Death and Life in the Sierra Nororiental of Puebla

Tiltik put together the works they had done these past three years, regarding the subject of death and life. Then Tonaltzin, our textile arts workshop, embroidered some of the works. And @Bambú Maya (our bamboo workshop), with the help of @Barra de Marcos, framed the works. The exposition resulted in a collection of works that highlight what the Nahuat culture means to the people living it. The inauguration of the exposition was marked by a ceremony in which we asked for help from the ancestors, so that the artists from Tiltik are able to gather the support they need in order to keep on learning and growing as artists. The inauguration was attended by the cultural authorities of the state: the Secretary of Culture in Puebla; the secretary of the Institute of Indigenous Peoples from Puebla; and the founder of Tijiohtli AC, among others.

 

SELLING POINTS:

Last weekend we sold in Tianguis La Zurda, organized in the Centro Cultural Los Pinos. It was our first time selling there! We will be selling there again on December. ¡See you then!

 

Products from Tonaltzi:

This season we have T-Shirts and a couple of new designs. ¡Check it out! 

1 week of national artists painting in Xocoyolo
1 week of national artists painting in Xocoyolo
Stencil done by Luiz Zanik
Stencil done by Luiz Zanik
Selling in Tianguis La Zurda
Selling in Tianguis La Zurda
Tonaltzi and Bambu maya, showcasing their work
Tonaltzi and Bambu maya, showcasing their work
Tiltik's Workshop for Desparadigmas members
Tiltik's Workshop for Desparadigmas members
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Textile arts workshop
Textile arts workshop

THE SCHOOL

We currently have 10 students enrolled in the program, and after a change in restrictions due to a drop in Covid infections, they have been able to access face-to-face counseling that takes place 3 days a week in our institution, following hygiene measures and prevention.

 

THE WORKSHOPS

During the month of May, the workshops took a four week training program with "Pro-Empleo, A.C.", developing their business idea both conceptually and financially. Their business plans still need further improvement, but they are a good start to work with each shop and push them to become more self-sustaining.

In addition, the following was experienced in each workshop:

 

Textile Arts workshop:

Since the beginning of April, the workshop has been receiving 3 students who have been training in tailoring and backstrap loom. They have continued to experiment with new designs that combine the loom with not-so-traditional clothing designs. And along with producing they have made agreements with new spaces to be able to sell their products in different parts of Cuetzalan. These months they also managed to use an industrial cutter, to speed up production time and be more profitable in their costs. Finally, they also enrolled in the “Young People Building a Future” government program, and now they receive the help of 3 more people in the workshop.

 

Agroecology Workshop:

The agroecology team is working to recover the nutrients from the soil in the organization's land, which serves as a demonstration plot for other producers in the region. These months the team maintained the coffee planted, and also planted beans, kidney tomatoes, peanuts, and various varieties of fruit trees. A demonstration chinampa was also done in the field, and various recipes were experimented with to make compost. Finally, they also began to work with a group of producers from one of the Cuetzalan communities called Tepetzintan. In this community a group of “faenas” was formed (also known as hand-return work or tequio in other regions). In this work scheme, the group of producers support each other with work, and once a week the whole group goes to work on a plot owned by a member of the group; and each time they work on a different plot until all those of the group are covered. The team hopes that with this way of working, agroecological forms of production can be shared, and other knowledge can also be learned from other producers.

 

Graphic Arts Workshop:

A new space was rented for “Tiltik”, to separate the painting workshop from the engraving one. This space, called "Casa Tiltik", will also be able to host different professors that come to teach at Tiltik and also to the other workshops. On the other hand an alliance was achieved with the organization "Alas y Raíces", which is part of the Ministry of Culture at the federal level, to give more impetu to Tiltik's activities. A new instructor for the workshops, Erik Ávila, a major in Plastic Arts, joined the team. Luis Edgardo Mejía, also known as “Zanik”, and a student and workshop teacher at Tiltik, was also the recipient of a grant from the “PECDA”, a program of the Ministry of Culture. Zanik will be carrying out a project to explore the meaning of dreams in Nahuatl culture through painting. Meanwhile the students of both painting and engraving, approximately 25, continue their learning and practice.

 

Bamboo Workshop: 

The bamboo team these months developed its training plan and is about to open the workshop to the general public. At the same time, it is developing products such as chairs and tables with bamboo and smaller items such as jewelry boxes, gift boxes and some toys with which it seeks to make its way into the market.

Combining traditional loom with new designs
Combining traditional loom with new designs
Casa Tiltik
Casa Tiltik
Painting workshop
Painting workshop
Chinampa in the agroecology workshop
Chinampa in the agroecology workshop
Bamboo blueprint  tube
Bamboo blueprint tube
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The last three months have been hectic for us. It's always this way at the end of the year because of the accounting that needs to be closed at the end of each fiscal year. Here are the results of our fiscal year: 

Posición financiera - balance general

Estado de resultados

Balanza de comprobación

 

THE WORKSHOPS: 

Meanwhile, in practical terms, our store in Puebla survived the first months since its opening! We're slowly but surely increasing our sales, and meanwhile, the workshops are gaining insights on how the market works. In particular, the textile workshop is experimenting with new designs that combine the old "telar de cintura" techniques with new clothing patterns, such as traditional men shirts with new color combinations and textiles. 

We're developing a certain structure for all the workshops so that they can teach students and at the same time produce for selling. It's no easy task as learning and teaching involves a different logic as producing; in learning there has to be more room for error, and students need to have more creative liberty to really get involved in the work they are doing and learn to do it with love. Producing for the market on the other had involves a lot of analysis and thinking, so that the products sold can really make a profit. It's difficult to achieve an equilibrium in between both objectives, but it's part of what we're discovering and constructing as an NGO. 

One of the most rewarding achievements of this period was finishing, with the help of the bamboo workshop, the new bathrooms of our facilities. Our donors made this touching video that can be watched in youtube. (in spanish)

Meanwhile the visual arts workshop collaborated in painting a mural in a nearby town, called Jonotla, in the municipal market. It was team work, and while painting the mural the team also offered a couple of small painting and drawing lessons to the youth and children in the town. Also, the workshops received a couple of visits from other national artists, and we're starting to offer long and short stays to use the workshop's facilities. 

 

HIGH SCHOOL PROGRAM:

With one more person studying with us, the students in the high school program continue their studies, both in their homes with their laptops and at some extraordinary events, in our facilities. 

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COVID IN CUETZALAN DEL PROGRESO

Though this report includes the work we did in these three months, it is also important to mention that COVID finally reached Cuetzalan del Progreso, the town where we work. Though the rate of infection has not been as quickly or as deadly as in other parts, it was also forced us to slow down in our activities. We hope that even though times are tough, you are keeping well and surrounded by your loved ones. Thank you for your continuing support! 

 ..

Banos exterior
Banos exterior
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Store in Puebla
Store in Puebla

These past months have been rough on everyone. We all have had to make adjustments to our lives, and whether we like it or not, things have changed. 

On our side, Tijiohtli underwent a couple of major changes, as with most changes with COVID-19, changes that were somehwat forced on us by the circumnstances, but changes that in the end made a lot of sense.

So what happened in these months? 

THE HIGH SCHOOL: 

  • 10 Students graduated online, in August 2021. 13 more will be graduating in December, also online. And 10 more will keep on studying until August 2021.
  • We did not receive any new applications for the school this year. In part because we were very uncertain of what the future held, and we could not be certain that the minimum conditions required for new students to learn could really be met. In specific, we didn't know if we could trust our computers to new students whom we didn't know at all; or if they could keep up with the demanding school schedule by themselves, without having first a period of adjustment with us; or if we had the capacity to break up our groups in small classes coming at different days / schedules.
  • We decided instead this coming school year to focus our resources on strenghtehing our theoretical framework, and enhancing our instruments for measuring our short term results and long term impact. 
  • We closed for good our installations for receiving students overnight, and our kitchen to feed the students. This measure that we once thought impossible, has reduced our costs tremendously, and in the process we found out that the students and the teachers could adapt well, bringing their own food from their homes -food which was more culturally adept than what we offered. 

 

THE WORKSHOPS: 

  • We received under freeloan a good deal of caprentry and sewing machines, from Germinalia, A.C.
  • The agriculture workshop allied itself with 2 more producers of coffee, and 3 students' families, to sell quality coffee in more quantity. With the help of the graphic workshop, we developed a special package for the coffee, mimicking the big sacks where coffee is usually transported in the rural areas. Also, the idea is to work with these producers not only their coffee, but their general practices for their land, in order to make them more sustainable and agroecologic. 
  • The textile workshop continued to produce new models of tshirts for women, so that in alliance with the graphic workshop, we have now around 5 different models of printed tshirts for women to sell
  • We opened a store in Puebla, in alliance with Centro Cultural Nopalli, to sell our products and other products from people in Puebla. We will now be shipping orders from this store! We tried briefly to ship it directly from Cuetzalan, but the waiting time was too long. The furniture for the store was made by our Bamboo artisans in the Bamboo workshop. 
  • We had a robbery in the school, at night. The burglars took about $2,500 worth of goods, between different tools and machines from the workshops and one laptop. We managed to have a video of the burglars leaving our premises, but we still haven't gotten any lead as to who it might have been. 
  • We started building our own bathrooms, with capacity for around 60 people. One of the bathrooms will be waterless, as to serve as future demonstration for areas where this might be necessary. Also, the installations are being built with a combination of bamboo and masonry. In order to do this, we also built a tub where bamboo is being treated, so as to improve its lifespan. This will be a tub that will be helpful in general to sell bamboo products that are durable outside our place. 
  • Approximately we have managed to retain 6 alumni in the workshops, paying them for the work they do, and at the same time encouraging them to keep on studying and perfecting their talents and habilities. 

 

Shortly we will be sending you our catalogue for the upcoming X-mas! Thank you for your support and interest in our cause. 

Keep safe! 

 

          

Inside of the store
Inside of the store
Textile workshop with their new machines
Textile workshop with their new machines
Bathroom project
Bathroom project
Bathroom construction
Bathroom construction
Garments produced by the textile workshop
Garments produced by the textile workshop
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Organization Information

Tijiohtli, AC

Location: Mexico City - Mexico
Facebook: Facebook Page
Project Leader:
Sofia Becerra
Mexico City, Puebla Mexico

Funded Project!

Combined with other sources of funding, this project raised enough money to fund the outlined activities and is no longer accepting donations.
   

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