|Posted by cigarra-eng on January 25, 2010 at 3:58 PM|
I’d like to take advantageof this opportunity to express my hope that you all had a great holiday seasonand to wish you a very happy New Year filled with prosperity and blessings foryourselves and your families.
This has been a very goodyear for us in Cigarra! Lookingback on our accomplishments for the year, I’m pleased to report that we havebeen able to grow and improve our existing programs, and have expanded intoother new areas as well.
Among our ongoing programs:
Ø We have continued our relationship with the UBA ofParaíso (Unidad Básica de Atención) the Primary Health Unit of The ParaísoHospital. Two nurses from the local “Vista Hermosa” Hospital come monthly tovaccinate the children and keep their records current. Among the many benefits of this programis that it reinforces among the parents the importance of proper record keepingfor their children’s heath.
Ø We have established a new relationship with theDental Service of this hospital, which includes six monthly visits of dentiststo the school.
Ø We continue to monitor nutritional health by havinga nutritionist review our menu on a quarterly basis, and by spottingmalnourished children through monthly charting of their height and weight.
Ø Doctors without Borders continues to assist familiesin the area, though at this time, not in our facilities. Once we have our new consulting spacewe will be able to provide them with better facilities.
Ø Profamilia, the State-run family planning entity,consulted on our premises three times and attended 108 people.
Ø We organized eight sales of second-hand clothing atvery low prices, open to the neighborhood. The proceeds were used to purchasesupplies for the daycare facility.
Ø We continue our association with the Archdiocese’sFood Bank and their support programs. We buy our weekly groceries from them at reduced prices and participateactively in supporting the work of the many foundations that network throughthe bank in our area.
Ø We continue receiving deliveries of food and schoolsupplies from The World Food Program of the UN.
Ø St. George’s School has chosen us as one of theirsocial outreach programs, and provides us with food, entertainment, visits bystudents and Christmas presents for the children of the daycare andneighborhood. Because of thisrelationship, we now have a revenue stream of monthly contributions from theparents of St. George students.
We are especially excitedabout several new initiatives in 2006:
Ø We have created associations with severalinstitutions of higher learning, including the INCCA University, the JesuitJaveriana University and the San Buenaventura University. In this program, final year students,studying to become Preschool Teachers, come once weekly to work with our teachersand the parents of the community. In October they established an eight-week reading club called“Lecto-loquitos” with the older students. This work formed the basis for their graduation thesis. Reading, analyzing, discussing anddramatizing books was greatly enjoyed by the kids, and we will continuedeveloping this concept.
There have been some especially wonderful successesfrom this program. Diego Barrera, a psychology student from the ICCA, came tothe daycare to work with children and families at risk three times a week. He wrote his thesis about resiliency inchildren, in the face of great poverty and violence, based on his experiencewith Cigarra children. He willcontinue working with us this year, now as a fully-fledged psychologist. Another student helped us withadministrative suggestions after analyzing our business model for her thesis.
Ø We have expanded this year a program to encouragecontinuing education opportunities for our staff. This program includestime-off grants and tuition assistance, as well as bringing noted speakers toour facilities.
This year one of our teachers took a four-sessionworkshop in psycho pedagogy given by the San Buenaventura University. We ran a 20-day workshop on childdevelopment and schooling with students of the ICCA that was taken by all ourteachers. Our cook also receivedextra training in the correct handling of food.
Ø As part of our educational outreach to the community,we held five community workshops where we taught handicrafts, home treatment ofdiarrheal disease, cooking and recycling.
Ø Last—but not in any way the least—thanks to yourdonations, we will be able to begin our remodeling the first quarter of2007. We now have thearchitectural plans ready and all the land required to expand our facilities.This will add more room for medical and psychological consultation and socialwork. We will also have an indoorrecreational area as well as an expanded kitchen and dinning area.
This year will be anotheryear to further this great dream of us all at Cigarra, and because of your aidand backing we will continue to expand our programs to help this sector of ourcountry in a more integrated way.
Thanks again for all yoursupport.
President and Founder