Approximately 27% of adults, or 59,000 people, in the province of Usulután cannot read, one of the highest illiteracy rates in El Salvador. Many of these are people in their 30s and 40s whose basic education was disrupted by the civil war. The literacy campaign seeks to have 35 literacy circles up and running in the Jiquilisco area of Usulután by Fall 2011, bringing the provincial total up to at least 190 circles with over 1,750 beneficiaries, including graduates and ongoing participants.
One of the greatest local needs is access to basic education. The education of many men and women in El Salvador has been interrupted by the civil war and poverty. In the department of Usulutan alone, approximately 27% of the population, or 59,000 people, do not know how to read and write, a major barrier to their engagement as informed citizens.
Our partner organization in El Salvador, the Mangrove Association, is building a strong, multigenerational movement for change, and youth are placed at the forefront of this community change. The literacy campaign seeks to bring local literacy rates up by training high school students in remote rural areas to implement a tutoring program in which they each train 5-7 adults – often their own parents and neighbors – to read and write.
For our local partners at the Mangrove Association, a community organization which builds collective leadership skills, the program offers an opportunity to train youth in valuable skills. The young facilitators are given leadership responsibilities that they are not often afforded in a society where youth have few viable options for positive participation.
This project has provided additional documentation in a PDF file (projdoc.pdf).
Women at the Forefront of Grassroots Organizing