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Each New Year, we reflect on what we’ve achieved in the past year. In 2016, thanks to the support of our partners and donors, we were able to have an even greater impact on the lives of youth and children in Central America by improving and expanding education in rural communities.

We share our achievements with you here.

 Our Community Leadership Program in 2016

At the beginning of 2016 we selected five community representative leaders to become part of RJF’s new Community Leadership Program. These leaders received mentoring and support from RJF to help their peers realize their visions for the creation of improved education within their communities. Here is what they, and we, accomplished last year thanks to your support.

land and site for new high school. Improved access to education

We secured a donation of land from a local resident, formed a partnership and signed a contract with the Ministry of Education in Nicaragua for the construction, staffing and maintenance of a new high school in the community of Llano Largo. Soon, 38 students will no longer need to travel 4 hours to the city to study beyond 9th grade.

Higher quality education

Teachers writing on a flip chart during training. RJF and School Director, Maria Guzman, brought together 24 teachers from El Ostional, and neighboring communities, to participate in an intensive professional development training. The workshop focused on improving their teaching practice so that they can better meet the learning needs of their students. It included the creation of a Resource Center where teachers can go to access online mentoring, communities of practice, and classroom resources on an ongoing basis. Members of RJF’s Advisory Council Farima Patricia Pour-Khorshid (UCSC) and Margarita Casas (UTSA) assisted in facilitating the workshop.

teachers on computersAnother 11 teachers graduated from RJF’s Technology Education Center in the community of Tortuga and earned a certificate in computer literacy.
 
Thanks to these accomplishments, 375 students are now benefiting from higher quality teaching and school experience. Learn more.

Increase in relevant educational opportunities

student receiving their certificate in computer literacyTechnology education

The success of RJF’s Technology Education Center in the community of Tortuga continued in 2016. Another 46 young people become earned their certificate in computer literacy, improving their chances of securing employment in the local tourism industry. Learn more.

Training in water management      

residents digging trenches for water pipes enewsRJF helped the committee leaders responsible for water management, in the community of Tortuga, to improve their technical skills by facilitating peer-to-peer learning opportunities between three communities. Through a new partnership, the community was able to access the expertise and learn from professors and students in the Hydrology Department at the National Autonomous University in Managua (UNAN).

With this new knowledge, RJF community leader, Arsenio Yobank, was able to mobilize his community to connect 11 houses to the main water system, giving 41 residents direct access to the central water supply. The photo to the right is of local residents digging trenches for the new water pipes and the extension of the system.
 
These are the 2016 community leadership success stories - stories of individual lives changed for the better - which we were able to achieve in 2016 thanks to the support of our donors and partners.

More on our plans for 2017 soon.

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