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Update on Honduran Program

posted Jan 27, 2015, 7:52 PM by Admin Activiteca

We are now training teachers and a future coordinator at a new location, Instituto Nazaret, in Urraco, about 30 miles north of the other Jesuit-established school we are supporting, Instituto Loyola in El Progreso.

Regarding Urraco. our Director writes:
“This place is like a tropical paradise because all you see are trees, both the diverse native plants and the massive palm oil plantations.  In Urraco people walk the sandy streets freely until bedtime, leave their bicycles and motorcycles unattended, and don't worry because the only large-scale vehicles are buses and palm trucks, and the thieves do better in other cities. The staff at Nazaret are mostly women, working long hours at jobs they get very scant salaries for, but they're attentive to everybody and manage things in an admirably cooperative style. 
Everywhere in the city, the water comes only for an hour once or twice a day, so you always have a cement storage tank or a plastic barrel, and flush the toilet with a pail of water. Despite the omnipresent mosquitoes, nobody has screens.  The school has the bare bones of furniture, the computer lab equipment is in bad shape because there's no money for a trained lab teacher, and the electric bill for the machines in the wood and welding shops is killing the budget.
Fe y Alegria helps with the salaries of all its institutions, but is now telling them they need to be “self-supporting.” Here you can't raise tuition, because the students are poor, so some shop teachers do projects for customers to bring in revenue. Yesterday we drove around the country for 8 hours visiting the offices of palm plantation cooperatives to ask the landowners—about the only people here with money—for pledges. 
Last year Nazaret got donations from some cooperatives, a total of $1,200—enough to pay 3 teachers for one month.”