United in Hope Scholarship Program: 2016 Annual Report

We connect US sponsors with Nicaraguan children who grew up in La Chureca, providing the funds and structure needed to allow these students to have a better education and more opportunity. Specifically, we pay for tuition to private school and university; provide funds for books, school supplies, and uniforms; and provide a small classroom within their community to study and receive tutoring help.

2016 Financial Report

In 2016, we provided $7,794 worth of financial support, broken into six main categories.
  • Approximately $797.50 in initial setup costs. This included renovation of a small room in the community to use as a study hall (installing a door, purchasing paint, and furnishing with desks, chairs, a bookshelf, a computer, a printer, ink, a wifi router, etc).
  • $982 of ongoing office expenses, including: $202 for ink, paper, etc; $360 rent for the study hall; $420 for internet.
  • $100 in donations for medical supplies for the adjoining medical clinic.
  • $48 in fees for sending money internationally.
  • $1,380 in wages to the Program Director in Nicaragua.
  • Approximately $4,486.07 in annual tuition expenses and graduation fees.
Sources of Funds
  • $1,440 donated by 27 different individuals towards the end of 2015.
  • $1,854 in recurring donations.
  • $4,500 in a start-up grant.

Roots and Where We Are Now

Towards the end of 2012, Rosa, a nurse who had worked in La Chureca for over a decade, asked us to help support two students by providing funds for them to go to a private school outside of the landfill where they lived. She explained that it would provide a much better opportunity for the children: smaller classes, more discipline, periodic drug paraphernalia checks, good English classes, a computer lab, and exposure to life outside La Chureca. We started with two students, and have added a student or two each year. Over the decades, La Chureca had become a destination for most financially destitute in Nicaragua: if all else failed, they could move into the landfill, collect trash, and sell what they could. This persisted for generations, and most of the children in our program knew no life outside La Chureca. La Chureca has changed — new cinderblock homes were built for the families outside of the landfill and their old homes were bulldozed. Many things have improved, and many things have not.
In late 2015, fueled by the generous donations of many individuals, we expanded the program to make both a deeper and broader impact with those we sponsor. Rosa, seeing that many children still had trouble studying at home (where they live with many relatives and would have to pay by the hour for internet to do research) envisioned a study hall–a small room in the community, equipped with basic supplies, internet, a computer, and a printer–where she could go to work with the kids each day. In order to distribute the fixed ongoing costs of that room and make a wider impact, we expanded the program to support 10 students.
2016 was a great year! The students did very well in their classes, and we had our first graduate, Hector. We are very proud of everyone’s effort and grades, and look forward to seeing what they’ll accomplish in this year!

In 2017

  • We will become a 501(c)(3) organization to give tax-deductible benefits to donors.
  • We will seek to help raise English scores by providing an English tutor six hours a week (and we’ll evaluate the impact that has after 1st term grades are released).
  • We will improve the amount of updates to donors to keep them informed of how their student is doing, by sending an iPhone for pictures that will automatically upload to the cloud.
  • We will begin gathering more information to understand the relative impact of the program, as compared to other very low-income public schools (statistics currently provided describe the entire country, which encompasses a vast rural area with very different patterns than cities like Managua, and within the cities our community represents some of the poorest of the poor).
  • We will seek to raise funds through direct sponsorship (in which a donor or donor family is linked with the student their funds support), smaller ongoing donation options, and one-time social media campaigns to raise whatever else is needed.
Thank you so much for your support in helping this program come to be. Please consider sponsoring a student for $70/month, a partial sponsorship from $35 to $10 per month, or a one-time donation to help the entire program.

2016 Student Report

Prepared by Rosa Esmeralda Diaz, Nicaraguan Program Director
In 2016, the ten students passed their classes very well. The subjects that were most difficult for them were Mathematics and English, so all this year we’ve been working on strengthening what they learn in school and helping them with assignments.
It’s worth mentioning that among our students is Héctor Ñamendis Mendoza; he is the first grandchild or child who graduated in his family. They are of scarce economic resources, who lived together in the largest landfill in Nicaragua, known as La Chureca. Today there is a Waste Plant where they continue to work but the money they earn isn’t sufficient to have their children in school, much less prepare them. It’s because of this that Héctor’s dream is to study Engineering Systems, for which I ask that you continue to support him in higher education. He is very good with Mathematics and he helps strengthen the other students with their Math. Héctor has been a part of the program for three years.
Ana Yanci Cano Castaño, who is going into 10th grade, is a young woman who has little support from her parents, since they are separated. Her mother is a Home Assistant (cooking, cleaning, etc), her father is a taxi cab driver. She lives with her grandmother and two brothers in Villa Guadalupe (the community of new housing built to relocate those who lived in La Chureca and other very poor neighborhoods around Managua). She often works on the weekends selling jewelry to help sustain the home, buy things she wants, and help support the school costs of her brothers. She went to the study hall frequently, and ended the year without any issues in her grades.
Daysi Madriz, a young woman who is going into 8th grade, was one of the best students in the program. The school gave her a diploma of recognition as the best student in her class, and she excelled in all subjects. She’s a person who is always willing to give her best, she’s intelligent, and always happy helping the other students in the program who can’t complete something. Her family is of scarce economic resources. Her father is the one who sustains the family, working as a Loader in a company. Her mother is a homemaker.
Jade Gonzales was elected Miss Congeniality in her school. She is a strong young woman, and was on the Honor Roll throughout the year, the second highest scoring student after Daysi. Her parents help her in her school obligations. She is dynamic, cheerful, always looking for ways to better herself in her studies. She wants to become an architect, to help the most poor in society of Nicaragua by planning social homes and buildings. She likes English like a second language.
Melany Picado is a young woman in 7th grade. She has very little help in school from her father, a taxi driver who works both shifts and is a single father. Melany lives with her maternal grandmother. She received a lot of help in math from Héctor, who helped her with her homework and to make it to the study hall. She completed the academic year with a lot of her own strength as well.
Nohelia Cortes is in 7th grade, a daughter of a single mother who works as a Home Assistant. This young woman worked very hard in her classes, the most difficult of which was English. She always asked for help in study hall, and always receives the help of her mother. She wants to study to be a Veterinarian.
Cristina Delgado, a young woman who is studying Journalism, is going into her 3rd year at University. She’s works very hard, coming from a very poor family which sells slow-cooked beans to sustain themselves. There are four children in total, who pass through many difficulties for daily living.
Yasser Castro, a young man going into 10th grade, worked weekends or free moments to complete tasks for neighbors, like sweeping the patio, going to the store, or going to the market to make a little money to help his mother with maintaining the house. They are a family of scarce economic resources. His mother doesn’t know how to read or write, and goes to houses to wash and iron clothes. He’s a hardworking young man who likes to read and is a very good student in Language and Literature. He would like to graduate and become someone good in Nicaraguan society.
Cristian Alvarez Silva, a boy going into 6th grade of Primary School, will graduate into Secondary School this year. His mother provides for the family alone, washing and ironing clothes, and selling ice cream and ice from her house. They are of scarce economic resources who don’t receive much help from anyone. Cristian takes care of his youngest brother when his mom leaves home. He’s a very hardworking boy and did well on his grades.
Eveling Escobar Rodríguez, a young girl who is going into 3rd grade of Primary School, did excellent in her classes. She receives help from her parents, who work in the Recycling Plant close to the community. She’s an introverted and very cheerful girl. Now that she knows how to read, she loves to read stories, and looks for books and anything else to read.
Please become part of the community in 2017, by supporting a student at whichever level you are able to, and thank you for helping make 2016 such a great year!

 

Provide a full scholarship:


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Half Scholarship:


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$20 recurring:


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$10 recurring:


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Jade, crowned Miss Congeniality
Jade, crowned Miss Congeniality
Hector, Eveling, Nohelia
Hector, Eveling, Nohelia
Melany, Daysi, Nohelia
Melany, Daysi, Nohelia
Daysi and Jade
Daysi and Jade
Yasser and family
Yasser and family

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