Common Hope celebrated the inauguration of our newly renovated library on Friday, November 5 along with our partner in the library project, The Riecken Foundation. Jeff Barnes, Common Hope strategic planner, spoke about why we decided to take on this project and why it is so important. One of the most notable reasons, 1 in 4 first graders fails the grade. Guatemala Ministry of Education standards require children to know how to read by the end of first grade, when they may have had no preschool education, so extra attention is needed to prepare younger children for learning to read.
Paul Guggenheim, head of The Riecken Foundation, spoke, mentioning his excitement to partner with Common Hope because we work with a variety of different communities, so more people will have access to the library. Then Jacqueline Figeroa, our new Promoter of Reading and Creativity, spoke about the many new activities she is implementing to engage children with the library, and thanked the Reicken staff for all their help in the partnership. Finally, she took the group to the new children’s area, where a group of kids was waiting, and she read a story to them.