This project will help: 246 Compassion-assisted children
Estimated completion date: June 2023
The municipality of Huixtla, located in the south of the state of Chiapas, has some of the highest rates of poverty in Mexico. About 65.7 per cent of the total population in Huixtla lives below the poverty line, with 18 per cent living in conditions of extreme poverty. Most adults are unemployed, while some work as day labourers, earning the equivalent of $228 per month. Many children do not attend school because their parents cannot afford to buy uniforms and school supplies. Sadly, it is very common for children to work from an early age to help support their families. Many also suffer the effects of domestic violence and substance abuse.
In Colonia Buenos Aires, a community of about 2,500 in Huixtla, the local church wanted to respond to the pressing needs of their community and reach the most vulnerable children and families. In 2015, they began partnering with Compassion to run a holistic child development program. The church was so excited to offer children a chance to get an education, access health care and learn about God’s transforming love. Their program has been a great success so far, with enrolment increasing from an initial 150 beneficiaries to 246 as of this year.
While encouraged by this growth, the church has also been struggling to provide adequate and safe spaces for the ever-increasing numbers of beneficiaries. Currently, they only have five small spaces at their disposal—including a corridor and unsheltered outdoor courtyard—to accommodate all 246 children on centre days. The indoor spaces are cramped and lack proper lighting and ventilation, while the outdoor areas leave children completely exposed to the elements. The church doesn’t have an office or a separate, private space for children to attend their medical checkups. Further, the building also only has a single bathroom, which doesn’t even have a sink. With such limited space and poor sanitary infrastructure, the church is running the risk of violating state safety regulations.
This intervention will see the building of nine classrooms, a doctor’s office, a kitchen and dining area, as well as a sanitary block containing eight toilets and sinks. With these additional spaces, the Compassion centre can continue running vital programming in the community that contributes to the holistic development of children in need, lifting children out of poverty in Jesus’ name.
Did you know?
While 99 per cent of children in Mexico complete their primary school education, only 68 per cent will stay in school long enough to get their high school diploma.
Colonia Buenos Aires is a coastal community of around 2,500 in the Huixtla municipality of Chiapas state, where nearly two-thirds of the population live in poverty. The local church in Colonia Buenos Aires has a vision to reach the most vulnerable with Jesus’ love and has been partnering with Compassion since 2015 to offer a holistic development program for children. While the numbers of beneficiaries have continued to grow over the last seven years, the church has just not been able to keep up. Currently, they only have five small spaces to accommodate all 246 children, including a corridor that has been converted into a makeshift classroom. Also, the church building has just one toilet, which is being shared by all beneficiaries and staff and does not even have a sink for handwashing. The current conditions of the facility do not meet the requirements of state safety regulations, putting the future of this program at risk.
Church staff, along with some members of the congregation, have been doing whatever they can to raise funds to improve their building, including running a small restaurant on the church premises. So far, they have managed to raise enough money to rebuild some parts of their building and prepare for the construction of a second floor. But to complete this project and ensure they can continue serving all 246 beneficiaries, the church needs help.
In order to continue serving children and families in need, the local church in Colonia Buenos Aires needs help. Their current facilities cannot comfortably or safely accommodate the growing numbers of beneficiaries, with some classes being conducted in a hallway and others in an unsheltered courtyard where children have no shade from the hot sun. A single bathroom is being shared by all 246 children and church staff, and there is no private space for children to attend their medical appointments. The church has been raising funds through various projects to support the improvement of their facilities and the construction of new spaces for children. But with limited resources, they simply can’t do it alone.
You can help the church in Colonia Buenos Aires construct additional spacious rooms as well as proper toilet facilities, so they can accommodate their beneficiaries safely and to code and continue running their vital program. Your gift will enable the church to continue their building construction efforts and add nine new classrooms, a kitchen/dining area, an office space that can also be used by a doctor for medical checkups, and eight new toilets: four for boys and four for girls, to ensure privacy. Children will also receive hygiene training to reduce the risk of disease.
What your gift will do
Your gift will help the church in Colonia Buenos Aires expand its existing facility and install new sanitary infrastructure, including:
- 9 new classrooms
- 1 office/doctor’s office area
- A kitchen and dining area
- 8 toilet facilities (4 for boys and 4 for girls), including flushing toilets and sinks
- Construction materials (black work, foundations, columns, walls, roof, plastering)
- Finishes (electrical installation, hydraulic installation, paint, tiles, windows and doors)
- Local contribution: US$7084.96
- Handling of funds: Compassion Mexico will distribute funds and ensure that this intervention remains within budget.
- Follow-up: Church leaders and staff will oversee the construction process and submit regular reports on their progress. Children will also receive hygiene training and will learn about proper hand washing techniques. The church will continue to clean and take care of the building.