For those unfamiliar with the idea of a "Gap Year", which is not as uncommon as one might believe, some students who have just graduated from high school chose to take a period of time before jumping in to their future plans and commit to a university or a career. I am one such student. My high school years were full of rigorous studies and a committment to education, which is still a vital part of me. However, I have chosen to take a year in which to discover more about myself and my responsibilites as a person in this world. Part of this is taking some time to give of myself; sharing my time, energy, knowledge, and love to the orphaned and at risk children of Guatemala City.
Guatemala City, Guatemala is a bustling, complex city that is packed with both the richest men and the poorest children. I have previously visited this beautiful country twice, and I completely fell in love. It is a country with resilience in it's blood, one that has been shaken with civil war and horrible earthquakes. Guatemala city is plagued with extreme poverty and all the problems that come hand in hand with it. And yet there is a powerful beauty. Estimately 1.2 million people living in Guatemala City, around half the total population. Of the total population, half are under the age of nineteen, with only a 76% literacy rate. (via The World Factbook at
) It is a country rich in culture, yet poor in infrastructure.
Hope for Tomorrow Children's home exists to give orphaned or abandoned kids a family like environment in the midst of a tumultuous life. The wonderful children there span from ages from 1 to 16, boys and girls, each one with a colorful and unique personality. From their website, "Our journey to establish a children's home in Guatemala that would provide a nurturing environment for abandoned and orphaned children began in 2003. That vision is now a reality! Hope For Tomorrow Children's Home provides a stable family group to meet the physical, educational, medical, psychological, nutritional and spiritual needs of each child. As a Christ-centered program, we are working to provide a spiritual climate that encourages each child to realize God's call and ensure opportunities to increase their spiritual growth." Kenneth and Diana Sese are the directors of the childrens home. I will be participating in the children's everyday lives, helping with the preschool classes, tutor the children in their homework, and help the caretakers meet the needs of the children. I will also be sharing my extensive experience in dance by teaching dance classes.
The $3100 amount includes the cost of a round trip plane ticket, rent, a weekly grocery budget, and dance supplies including dance shoes. I cannot go without your help. Please help me in my dream to touch the lives of the children at Hope For Tomorrow! Thank you and God bless you!
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