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The Barrio Planta Project is a community development, education and arts initiative that provides the children and adults from the 'La Planta’ neighborhood in San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua with free English classes. Through these classes, along with extra-curricular activities and community development projects, they are able to discover their skills, passions, confidence and pride for an overall more fulfilling, successful and rewarding life.
The Barrio Planta Project is an intensive community development program created to provide the outlet for these needs. As a main base for the program, we hold free English classes three days a week for the children of San Juan del Sur. There are 100 adults and 150 children from the neighborhood who are already enlisted in the program, and counting. Classes are held in the the nearby recreation center, La Escuela Integral, owned by the Nicaraguan Association for Cultural Promotion (APC). We have begun reconstructing three classrooms within the space, which hasn’t been used for thirty years due to lack of funding.
These English classes give our students the opportunity to find jobs in the growing tourism industry of San Juan del Sur, which was just a tiny fisherman’s village ten years ago. However, that isn’t all we do. We also give positive outlets for the children’s abundant energy that would otherwise remain stagnant due to poverty and lack of hope and opportunity. Activities such as mural painting, basketball, and theater foster focus, discipline, following instructions, creativity, and teamwork. These endeavors enforce confidence, pride, individuality, and community.
- Maya Houston
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