This elementary school is serves a community on the lowland plain lying between the Caribbean Sea and the mountains which border the famous central valley of Costa Rica. Most of the families in this area either work small farms or are laborers on the nearby banana plantations. Not a lot of extra money but there are soccer moms! Parents and community care about the school and educating their children. The principle, Anyely Vargas, grew up here and attend this school. Be sure and check out the “Donor “ like to the right, we have great story to tell.
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Most buildings in Costa Rica are made of concrete with tiled floors. Wiring and plumbing is very basic. The humid/rainy climate makes everything devolve quickly, Books, wood and even galvanized metals don’t have a long life.
The damp painted concrete hosts molds, plants insects unless washed frequently and even the best paints have a radically shortened lifespan. Huge efforts have been made by the Municipality, the parents, school board and ETF donors, which have raised this, once dismal, school into a wonderful place for children to learn. More to do? YES
Esperanzas, like most rural schools is one story, concrete with wire mesh where the windows would normally be. Wind and rain are common problems during the rainy season.
Wash-up areas are "home made" bathrooms are well maintained by parent volunteers.
Hot meals are prepared from scratch on site. All children receive a hot meal every day.
When we first visited the school the play are was open to the weather and equipment was scarce. The barrels were a backstop!
In 2015 the Canton of Sarapiqui build a large covered play area.
PLay ground in 2013
Storage shed in play area in 2013
Also in 2015 the K94Kids donated funds for this swing set, the Costa Rican manufacturer delivered and installed for free and the parents leveled the ground.
The 2015 new project was to build a typical home, like the ones the children's grand-parents lived in.
Building site is laid out and turf removed.
Foundation and corner poles. The building will have a concrete foundation and a "core-gated steel roof.
Core-gated steel roofing and gutters are a compromise with the past where thatched roofing was common.
Locally harvested corner posts and beams.
Concrete is mixed on site.
Concrete block foundation, corner posts and turf cleared.
Framed and roof.
Principal, Angie Viques who inspired this project
New principal and English teacher. Siding was harvested by permit form the national forest
Windows are next. Traditionally there would have been just shutters.
The "typical house" will become the schools Library.
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The kids, the children, the students, this. after all is why we're interested, they are the future we are responsible for.
Most of my photos are from the 2014 Graduation & End of year celibration. 2
Most of my photos are from the 2014 Graduation & End of year celibration. 3
Most of my photos are from the 2014 Graduation & End of year celibration. 4
Most of my photos are from the 2014 Graduation & End of year celibration. 5
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Each year we send a request for a "wish list" (RFP on foundation terms:) to the schools in Costa Rica. often the list is very much the same the same. Classroom supplies are quite similar the world over. Paper, pencils and art supplies. We ask again for the "dream list" which takes a bit more consideration. We to get donor who are able to make major improvements!
Santillana or RH Spanish textbooks
required books at listed
paper, chalk, construction paper, dry erase markers, adhesive vinyl rolls, masking tape, large manila envelopes, white envelopes
English and Spanish Dictionaries
erasers, scissors, colored pencils, playdough, acrylic paints, pencil sharpeners, glue, markers
computers for kids
tablet (smart device)
electrical upgrades in school
school yard fence
large pad locks
die cutting machine
playground for 9-13 yo's
Parents of children are also expected to supply clean uniforms every day, backpacks with the basics (notebooks, pencils, pens rulers..). At Staples in Costa Rica this would cost about $50, beyond what most can afford!
Each year we send a request for a "wish list" (RFP on foundation terms:) to the schools in Costa Rica. Often the list is very much the same from year to year. Classroom supplies are quite similar the world over. Paper, pencils and art supplies. We ask again for the "dream list" which takes a bit more consideration.
For the last two years major donations from Canines for Kids in Albany New York have underwritten wonderful improvements.
In 2014 the top of the list was playground equipment. Caine for Kids, an Albany New York funder, redirected their gift, Ecoteach Travel did the research, the school parents prepared the ground and a Costa Rican manufacturer donated the delivery and installation.
This, 2015, on short notice the principal came up wi the idea of building the "Typical Costa Rican House". A history project and an interpretive center for visiting US student groups.
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