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District 5950 Rotary Clubs come together in service

For the second consecutive year, Rotary clubs from District 5950 worked together to support education for impoverished students affiliated with Common Hope. This year’s project was focused on the implementation of a new and improved math curriculum, Guatemática, in Guatemalan public schools, as part of Common Hope’s Partner School program. Minneapolis City of Lakes, Buffalo, and St. Cloud Rotary Clubs combined their resources, donating $3,000 which was then matched by Rotary District 5950 for a total of $12,000. Their grant provided math workbooks for 1st – 3rd grade students and instruction guides for teachers in five public primary schools in villages outside of Antigua.

During Guatematica’s first year of use, more than 1,500 young students and teachers will benefit from this generous donation. Rotary’s support will also enable teachers to continuously improve math instruction for years to come– a perfectly synchronized endeavor as Common Hope’s Partner Schools begin phase 2 of the Partner School Program, which focuses on enhancing math and reading curriculum.

Taking their support a step further, 15 individuals representing the Minneapolis City of Lakes and St. Cloud Rotary clubs traveled to Guatemala on a Vision Team in January. In preparation for their trip, they held a packing party where they filled suitcases full of needed school supplies, and donated their checked luggage space for their trip to carry everything with them. During their week in Guatemala, they connected with their partner club, Guatemala del Este Rotary. Together they delivered workbooks, math activity materials, and supplies to Common Hope partner schools in Santa Catarina and San Miguel Escobar. Each teacher was presented with the materials they would receive, and tears of gratitude were shared with the team.

In addition to their time in partner schools, the team also helped to host School Supply Day in Antigua, working with Common Hope staff to organize and distribute school supplies to more than 1,500 students in preschool through high school who live in 17 villages near Antigua. They also built a home for a family who had completed their sweat-equity hours, accompanied social workers on home visits and lent a hand in other volunteer activities. To see photos from their Vision Team trip, click here to visit our Vision Team Photo Diary.

Thank you, Minneapolis City of Lakes, St. Cloud, and Buffalo Rotary clubs, for your support on the ground in Guatemala and here in Minnesota. The Rotary motto of “service above self” was exemplified throughout your experience. Your generous contribution and your active participation truly make a difference inside the classroom, and out.

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