Helping 250 of the poorest children in Costa Rica to get a quality education. The school, Barrio La Victoria, had not received any funding or meaningful supplies from its government in 3 years. With only six teachers for 250 students, the teachers and parents struggled to keep the children learning by photocopying learning materials and scrounging for pencils.
Although the children were very poor they had amazing spirit. Even with many obstacles, the children won a national education award and were champions in handball and soccer. Surprisingly the children only had two handballs and one old soccer ball for practice.
The Children’s Homes
The children lived in the village around the school in unbearable conditions by US standards. Their homes were assembled without running water or closed sewer, on top of a former garbage dump in a town called Barrio La Victoria on the outskirts of Liberia. The open sewer and frequent rain caused polluted run off that negatively impacted the children’s heath, causing disease, skin and sight problems. The poor people living in their village were mostly unemployed; many make money collecting garbage, and selling plastics and aluminum. This town had the areas’ highest incidence of drug abuse, alcoholism, domestic violence and child abuse.
We provided the school, Escuela Pueblo Nuevo, with school supplies that would last 5 years, including, writing, reading, art, and sports equipment including 5 soccer balls and 10 handballs. Band of Brothers along with members Dean Keller and Steve Sickler coordinated funding and a total of five families with children to visit the school and hand out the supplies. The school put on a thank you celebration and the families spent the day making art and playing soccer. The children now have the supplies to teach a full curriculum and can play sports at recess like children in the US.
“Interacting with and caring for those children was one of the best family experiences we have ever had in our lives”