Many of the families living in New Hope Village come from very difficult circumstances, having lived for years on borrowed land in the ravines of Guatemala City. Life there was a precarious
struggle day to day, with the everpresent danger of gang violence, mudslides, and eviction. Everyone was on their own, with no real sense of community.
Twelve years since moving to New Hope, the families have come a long way toward building a sense of community, stability and civic involvement. A neighborhood association was founded in 2009 to democratically govern the happenings of the community. Twenty-five families have fully paid for their homes and earned their land titles. Families have become more involved at New Hope School with every year.
And now this year, parents took over leadership of the school’s annual family day, previously planned by the teachers. It was a great show of leadership, and it bodes well for continued growth in years to come.
In total, eleven mothers in the Parent Teacher Association (PTA) planned this year’s event. They were invited by the school staff to do so, being some of the most active mothers at the school. Teachers supported the mothers by staffing games on the day of the event.
PTA President Aracely Galvez says this was a natural development in their participation. “This entire group of women has always supported the school and participated in school activities,” she says. “We do so to be role models for our kids, to thank Common Hope for what they’ve given us, and to know how our kids are doing in school.”
The event was a great success, with 700 attendees, 500 prizes given away, and $1,000 raised. Many prizes, ranging from water bottles to backpacks to small appliances, were donated by local Guatemalan companies. Great food and snacks were prepared by the PTA as well, including grilled steak and beans, tostadas, and ice cream.
Revenue from the event will be used to buy something for the students. Last year, each student received a physical education uniform. The PTA will be meeting again soon to decide on this year’s gift—and to discuss other ways they can get involved in the school.
Congratulations to the New Hope PTA for the strong leadership, successful fundraising, and memorable event. More pictures from the event below!