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Beyond Boundaries: Stories of Hope from New Hope School

In March, we celebrate International Women’s Month. The month is set aside to honor women’s contributions and raise awareness about discrimination and take action to drive equality. Common Hope, our dedicated team, and students aspire to drive change to help create a Guatemala that promotes education and opportunity for men and women alike.


We invite you to meet the inspiring female leader and Administrative Director of New Hope School, Elsa García, as well as students Elba, Andrea, and Damaris, who wish to make a positive impact on the school community, and beyond.

Meet Elsa, New Hope Director

In Her Words

"As the Administrative Director of New Hope School, my primary goal is to create an environment that fosters trust, security, and warmth for our students. We strive to make every student feel like they belong to a family from the moment they step through the doors until they leave at the end of the day.


My experience as a student inspired me to pursue a career in education. During my elementary studies, I had a tough time due to strict and demanding teachers who didn't accommodate "slow" learners. Because of my own experience, I aim to create an environment that promotes trust and security, where students are encouraged to express their thoughts and feelings. I am continuously inspired by the children I work with, and I am motivated to be part of the opportunity that education offers to plant a seed of knowledge within them.


Everything around us influences in a positive or negative way, living in traditional gendered roles can limit us as human beings, in the sense of limiting opportunities.


Over the years, I've seen a shift in the aspirations of our girls at New Hope School. Their interests are no longer limited by traditional roles, and they now dream of professional careers and eagerly participate in activities once believed to be exclusive to boys like soccer, math and robotics. This transformation fills me with pride and reinforces my commitment to providing equal and inclusive spaces for all students.


I believe that through education, Guatemalan girls and women can advocate for inclusion and equity by expressing their thoughts and, most importantly, believing in themselves that they belong in all spaces where decisions are being made."


Student Spotlight

Meet three New Hope students: Elba, Andrea, and Damaris. We asked them about their dreams, sources of inspiration, and times they've left their comfort zones.


Elba, 13

"Dreaming big means that we can achieve all our goals, regardless of what others say. Someone once told me that as a woman, I couldn't study what I wanted to study, but my mom inspires me to be an independent and strong woman who can overcome obstacles and achieve anything she sets her mind to. To create more inclusion more organizations, need to be created that advocate for equality so that girls and women in Guatemala are not discriminated against. Also, I want to challenge men who don't let women play in school because of their gender."


Andrea, 12

"For me dreaming big is like wanting to fulfill a marvelous dream. My dream is to be an engineer and to raise my family. I advocate for myself by playing soccer. My paternal grandmother once told me that being a woman meant I couldn't play soccer, but I replied, 'Why not? Women and men can both play ball!' It made me feel sad. However, my mom always encourages me to pursue my dreams and never give up. That helps remind me that women can run for office and achieve anything they set their minds to."


Damaris, 13

"Dreaming big is being able to fulfill my dreams. My dream is to be a teacher and to keep getting smarter. My mom inspired me to keep believing in pursuing my dreams. I try to be respectful to all people and encourage others to do the same."


Through the careful guidance of educators and Common Hope supporters, the next generation of empowered students are ready to make change. By providing access to quality education and nurturing the skills and talents of all students, we can help build a brighter and more equitable future for Guatemalan students. Be a part of their story today by joining The Pathway, where every dollar makes a difference.


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