Back to School in Guatemala

By Paula Bohland
Executive Director, GRACES

On Jan. 10, the students attending Escuela Integrada started a new school year. We want to assist the children in having a great experience as they take on another year of learning. I received a text from a child’s sponsor this week excitedly asking if Escuela Integrada sends a list of needed school supplies to the parents of children attending the school as they begin the school year.

My first thought to answer this question was probably not because many of the families cannot afford to buy school supplies for their children. However, I was not sure so I asked the school. To my surprise, I was informed that in fact a school supplies list does get sent to every family.

The staff at the school sends this request because they know that parents want to assist in buying a few of the supplies. It is a point of dignity and also allows the parents to partner and support the education of their children. However, there are many parents that can only provide a few items and some none at all. What happens then?

The school provides for those needs and you can help too. Just go to www.wearegraces.com/giving and make a donation. We are in need of book bags, notebooks, crayons, markers, chalk, paper, glue and more. There is no donation too small because money goes a long way in Guatemala. For instance, $35 will buy 10 students pencils, notebooks, crayons, markers, paper and glue. There is no need to worry about sending the supplies to the school, the teachers and staff love going to get the items for the children (and it’s better for the Guatemalan economy if we buy school supplies in Guatemala).

As you plan your month, consider offering up a prayer for the children going to school in Guatemala, some for the first time in their lives.  All of us at GRACES will work to keep you informed of their progress, special events and what is happening at the school this year. Thank you for your prayers and support, off to school we go!