History of the project «PASTORCITOS DE BELÉN»
Opening of Kindergarten and School
With some charity work and special events in Swiss cities Zürich and St. Gallen we have successfully collected enough donations and funds to build a kindergarten and 3 classrooms in 2004.
A school for 65 children has opened its doors in January 2005, it includes a kindergarten and classes for the school year 1 to 3.
Alongside with education, the children also acquired a feeling of security, learn about hygiene and if needed can have access to medical assistance.
The school today
Since January 2009, 79 children are studying at the Pastoricitos de Belén School in La Paz de Carazo, near Jinotepe, about a 1 1/2 hour ride from the capital Managua. The Kindergarten welcomes children from age 3 to 6. Teachers and staff members are employed full time, and others part time. Amigos Nicas entirely pays for the salaries of the employees, the maintenance of the school, as well as all equipments and books.
To have a long lasting school project we give priority to staff salaries and maintenance of the school. All together these are about USD 27’000, including health insurance for every member of staff. Regarding books and school equipment about USD 3’000 are needed.
The school also needs 3 more classrooms. We started collecting money to start building them but instead we have decided it made more sense to keep the funds to cover the school costs. Consequently temporary rooms have been set up and, should the opportunity arise, we will build permanent rooms. This is giving us more time to collect the missing CHF 22’000 for the construction work.
In the future, we have the great vision of being able to give one warm meal to each child, but at the moment it is sadly a vision we cannot realise. Sor Magdalena’s brother (one of the school founder) generously gave the school some land on which it would be possible to build a room and a kitchen as it is very close to the school.
Activities to support the school
Amigos Nicas carries out different activities to collect money towards the project, as well as reaching out to individuals who would be interested in donating or to gate sponsorship. Amigos Nicas is doing the following activities:
- Exhibitions to sell paintings and art work from Nicaragua
- Organising charity concerts
- Organisation of Fiestas Nicas with music, presentations and food from Nicaragua
- Organising “soup days” in a church in St. Gallen
- Selling art work and paintings on markets