As dark clouds were forming, the palms on the tall trees were dancing madly in the wind and claps of thunder were heard in the distant background. Then, suddenly, the sun broke through and the threat of rain disappeared. Over eighty children of all ages started pouring into the outdoor area where we held the “Let’s Play” monthly event. Let the fun begin!
There’s nothing so joyful as children having fun while participating for prizes in games, relays, crafts and Loteria (Mexican bingo). They are like magnets to face painting. These events also allow us to meet families, hold newborns and listen to individual stories of hardship and optimism.
I was even blessed to meet a new student who will become part of our scholarship program: an outgoing, bright, 14 year old brother of a twin and 7 year old brother, sons of a single mom who recently moved to La Paz from another Mexican state and all sleeping without mattresses on a dirt floor. Talk about hardship! Just as an aside, if you would like to be a sponsor and help this young boy have a better future, please drop me a line.
Did you know that only 16% of the adult population in Mexico has completed university-level studies? While only 12% of the population between 55 and 64 years had a degree, that percentage leaped to 21% in the population aged 25 and 34 years? Having a bachelor’s degree makes a great difference for workers, who earn close to twice as much as those who have only a high school diploma. (Education at a Glance 2016)
For those living with few financial resources, scholarship programs are one of the best ways to keep kids in school and offer them a way out of poverty.
So, as for me, a social worker, who enjoys meeting new families and hearing their stories, the children’s event provides the perfect opportunity. It’s also the perfect time to photograph moments of laughter, pride, competition and joy at receiving a prize for winning and a gift bag at the end. All the prizes and presents were donated by clients of Tailhunter International Sportfishing and my Toronto family. Thank you for your generosity.