School is back in session at Buen Pastor and with it 11 new girls to the internado and 3 new art workshops. Estudio473 is heading a reading and response workshop for the preschool through kindergartners, a painting workshop for the 1st through 4th graders, and a drawing workshop for the oldest girls.
Here are some photos of the youngest new additions to BP!
Lupita is four and is in pre-K. She has two sisters at Buen Pastor.
Camila is also four and in pre-K. Her sister is Frida, below.
Frida is three and in preschool. Her sister is Camila, above.
Last we have a picture of three new older girls, Vanesa, Rosita and Alondra helping Madre Bertita bake!
Below are some pictures from the farm!
As winter began in Peru this May 2011, SKIP launched a project with Givology to raise money for windows and doors for our newly constructed rooms. When funding for the project did not come through as expected, we had been forced to start using one of the rooms as a classroom in January as we simply did not have enough space for all the children!
Throughout summer the lack of windows and doors was not too much of a problem as it was warm and the extra ventilation was fine. As winter began, though, the children were getting cold during their lessons and were finding it hard to concentrate. The mothers who also have meetings in one of the rooms were also complaining that they were getting very cold as they sat and listened to the workshops.
We launched the Givology project as quickly as possible and 2 months later were relieved when we reveived a huge donation of more than half the money we needed which completed the appeal and meant that we could start work.
We have now completed putting windows in all of the rooms. In addition to providing much needed warmth, blocking out the draft, this has also made the SKIP Centre much more secure. In two weeks, we will begin work on the doors and shall be sending in pictures of these to Givology as they are completed.
We would like to thank all the people who made donations and also Givology for their ongoing support.
The potential impact of the Advocacy-Development e-book project is huge. The Turning point children come from a literacy-starved environment. The reading material in the slum mostly consists of hand painted signs on the local vegetable stalls or hair salons, and perhaps the occasional newspaper. Even for those in education, most schools do not have enough basic text books, let alone picture books or story books.
So what effect does it have growing up without books? Words not only have their own sound, flow, and force, but they create and stir feelings in us. They can make us angry or help us feel understood. They can raise questions or inspire creativity. They are not only to be read, but to be heard aloud. Hearing the stories of others is a powerful experience, and starts to shape our voice as we think about our own story. What was my beginning? If it was as a slum child, does that automatically mean the rest of the story is already written, with an inevitable ending? Or could it be different?
If I start to believe that my story is unique and worth telling, then it affirms that I myself am also unique and have worth. It helps me understand that I have power and a voice - perhaps limited by some external factors - but my words can shape, can heal, can ask, can influence, can demand. For a Kibera child this starts to open doors where before they couldn't even see doors, only the walls of disadvantage. And it is acheiveable with a laptop, a printer and some software! Through this project not only do they start to hear and enjoy a rich variety of books and stories, but find and develop their own voice, in small and simple age-appropriate ways. To see their own story published in an e-book and printed in a version they can hold and share with others, is a very significant moment.
Progress towards the e-book project has been slower than anticipated, partly due to funding still needed and partly due to recent security issues in Kibera which have limited what equipment we are able to take in to the centre of the slum. Despite these obstacles, we remain committed to this project, and to helping each child find their own voice, and shape their own future.