CONGRATULATIONS to all the Challengers on our first six Charity Challenges of 2011, biking from Guatemala to Honduras, the inaugural Nicaragua Volcano Challenge, Brazil's Chapada Diamantina Challenge , Guatemala's first Caribbean Kayak Challenge, Perú´s Cerani Pass and Ecuador's Volcano Challenge. Nicaragua's second volcano Challenge is set for 3rd-6th November and the third Guatemala Volcano Challenge dates are set for 27th November -2nd December.

Click on the following for our most recent official project reports for Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Ecuador, Perú and Brazil.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Changing Perceptions of the School in Brazil

The GVI Phoenix school in Mata Escura, Creche Sonho Vovo Clara, has been welcoming more and more students each week since volunteers arrived in early June. The school had previously suffered from underfunding, understaffing, poor facilities and a lack of educational direction and this had negatively affected its reputation in the local community.

GVI Phoenix volunteers have set about changing all of this, refurbishing and painting the classrooms, creating a new outside play area, employing local staff and of course bringing a huge range of educational activities to the school. The number of new children enrolling clearly demonstrates how perceptions are changing, however last week we saw proof of how drastically the image has changed.

2 mothers arrived at the school with their children and asked to have a look around, they were hugely impressed by the work they saw going on in the classrooms and the fully revamped facilities. They explained to project intern Paula how they had considered sending their children to the school the year before but had been told locally that it had a bad reputation and instead chose to stretch their very limited finances and send their children to the local fee paying school.

They told us that recently they had heard that everything was changing at Sonho Vovo Clara – they had made a detour to have a look one morning and saw the volunteers welcoming the children with big hugs. They also commented on how impressed they were to see the children leaving in the afternoon carrying art and craft projects.

They decided to enroll their children on the spot and they started on Monday – great evidence of how the hard work of GVI volunteers has overhauled this school in only 3 months and is now providing an invaluable resource for the local community in Mata Escura.


How does GVI Phoenix make a difference?

The following film was made in Guatemala, though the message is the same across all GVI Phoenix projects