You’re Making a Difference Here
In Guatemala, where 59% of the population lives below the poverty line, socioeconomic status is one of the biggest barriers to accessing a quality education (World Bank 2018).
The average length of schooling for a Guatemalan child is only four years and 24% of the population is illiterate (US Aid 2014; World Bank 2014). This is one of the highest illiteracy rates in the Western Hemisphere.
Pencils of Promise works with 190 communities in Guatemala to ensure students overcome these, and other, barriers to accessing quality education. Currently, PoP is impacting over 38,000 students in Guatemala.
BOCA COSTA REGION
The region of Boca Costa, located southeast of PoP’s Guatemala headquarters in Xela, is home to a more tropical climate than any of the other regions in Guatemala in which we work. PoP expanded to Boca Costa in early 2012, with our regional office located in Santo Tomás La Unión.
To date, we’ve built 121 schools in the region and have also provided teacher training and educational programming to many PoP schools in the region.
With a population of around 450 this farming community is located within the Boca Costa region of Guatemala. Cantón Pacúm currently serves 222 students, spread throughout 8 classes.
Max and Nono’s Impact in Cantón Pacúm
At PoP, we strive toward a world in which every child can experience and benefit from quality education. Previously, in Cantón Pacúm, students were learning in infrastructure that didn’t support their unique potential. Teachers were forced to combined different grade levels in the same classroom due to lack of space. Students were easily distracted, and overcrowded, often forcing grades to double up in classrooms. This allowed for disruption in the classroom, inefficient learning practices, and dangerous learning conditions. These conditions posed a hazard to student safety and well-being, as well as to engagement and learning.
We believe that a quality learning environment is critical to increasing student attendance, engagement and overall literacy outcomes.
In 2019, PoP partnered with the Cantón Pacúm community to build a new two-unit classroom block! The community is devoted to providing a valuable education to its students, and contributed 20 percent of the resources and labor required for construction.
We establish partnerships with communities who are deeply committed to their children’s education. The support of the Cantón Pacúm community ensures the sustainability of the school that it will remain a quality learning environment for generations to come.