Common Hope has a well-established track record for managing effective programs that achieve results. We have a four-star rating with Charity Navigator (www.charitynavigator.org) and maintain a three-year average of using 83% of funds directly on programs. Most important, Common Hope’s programs are making significant strides toward our greatest desired outcome for students: students are graduating from high school and becoming agents of change in their communities.

High school graduation, despite the odds


Oscar graduated from high school in 2011. He dreams of owning his own business someday, and he’s willing to work his way up the ladder to do so.

During the 2012 school year, Common Hope made education possible for 3,104 students, and 1,590 more children benefited from the extra resources and teacher training we provided at our six partner schools. In addition, we celebrated 147 high school graduates in 2012, bringing our grand total to 1,226 graduates since 1986, despite the fact that the average Guatemalan adult has not finished grade school. Before Common Hope, these students likely would have had to leave school after—or during—elementary. Instead, they are going on to become professionals like teachers, accountants, office administrators, and mechanics, greatly enhancing their quality of life.

Increased student performance and earning potential

The fact that our students are going to school, staying in school, and graduating against immense odds is evidence that our programs work. Now, even more empirical evidence exists. A 2011 study by the University of Chicago Graduate School of Public Policy found that Common Hope significantly increases the likelihood of graduating high school. Students who partner with Common Hope are 56% more likely to graduate from high school, according to the study.

In addition, former affiliates of Common Hope were found to be more optimistic about many aspects of their future: their employment prospects, their ability to improve their lives through their own efforts, and their possibility of having a higher standard of living than their parents. Our former students have reason to be optimistic—high school grads in Guatemala were found to earn significantly more money than their peers (+22% for males, +47% for females) and they were 50% more likely to report using preventive care and being in good health.

Through our integrated extra-curricular support and encouragement of parental involvement, children are getting the support they need to be successful. This success has long-term ramifications for children and their families. Sources such as the World Bank and UNESCO report that a high school degree can as much as double a person’s earning potential in developing countries like Guatemala.*


Berta has taught preschool since graduating in 2008. Coming from one of the poorest villages served by Common Hope, Berta has made the most of her high school degree.

Leadership and critical thinking skills

Besides career advancements, our graduates are entering adulthood with the leadership and critical thinking skills to become agents of change in their own communities. Read profiles of graduates on our blog to learn more about the ripple effects our programs are creating in Guatemala.

Program and financial summaries

To learn more about our recent program results, view a snapshot of our accomplishments in 2011 or download our most recent comprehensive Donor Impact Report. To read more about our financials, including our IRS Form 990s and audited financial statements, click here.