Donations Send 125 Children to School–September, 2011

Picture this: Big smiles and excited chatter while dozens of kids stood in an orderly line in extreme heat and humidity. What were they waiting for? Ice-cream, perhaps? No, they waited for notebooks, pens and pencils, protractors and the other things that would make it possible to attend school.

Friends of Cozumel volunteers recently sorted a mountain of donated supplies children must have in order to go to school. Fully stocked backpacks were distributed in August to children ready to attend kinder through prepa–the equivalent of elementary through high school.

While I swatted mosquitos and dabbed at the sweat running down my face, the soon-to-be students proudly accepted a backpack and pledged to study hard. They were clearly thrilled to receive our gifts.


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Even though many families value education, some can’t afford to send their children to school–or they must choose one child among many to attend. In addition to school supplies, children must also have uniforms, shoes, socks and underwear.

(photo left) Volunteer LaFonda traveled from Texas with friends to spend her August vacation helping out. As she helped clean children’s feet so they could try on donated shoes, she said “It’s such a blessing to be part of this. I don’t know who’s happier–the kids or me.”

FOC helped 125 children this year with a goal of 150 for next year. Volunteers have done a great job of gathering some of the needed supplies during back-to-school sales in the U.S., but we’re still seeking donations of backpacks, children’s and young adult’s athletic shoes, scientific calculators, and Spanish/English dictionaries. They’re simple things but they have the power to bring huge smiles–and send a child to school. ~~ Phyllis

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