THE SPIRIT PLEDGE TO SPONSORS:
All of the scholarship money goes to the girls.
There are no USA overheads, other than the annual service cost of this website. In Guatemala, we pay our housemother/cook/guard and the on site English teacher.
PURPOSE & FUNDING
Each girl must have a sponsor to be accepted into the program. Sponsors pay for the housemother’s wages, English teacher’s wages, utilities and maintenance, internet, books, necessary medical costs, transportation, an increasing percentage of the girl’s food (for many 100%), dental supplies for our dental volunteer, computer replacements, English program books, equipment and supplies and a myriad of other expenses.
Interested supporters and donors provide discretionary funds.
One donor is paying a hefty monthly donation to the building fund.
People who shop at smile.amazon.com can designate spiriteduc.org as the charity of choice, directing 0.5% of purchases to Spirit Education.
So, this is an effort from many people to make a difference in girl’s lives. ALL MONEY from these various resources goes 100% to benefit the girls. We do not have a corporate office or corporate salaries. The downside is that donors must accept we do not have a staff or funding for promotion and frequent mailings. Our focus is on providing excellent opportunities for as little as possible.
We are dealing with young women from tiny rural villages or impoverished neighborhoods in a more urban environment. These girls come from families with few dreams, little experience in the wider world and fewer economic resources. Their role models are family or neighbors with too many children living in abject poverty. What we hope for, is that they somehow have experienced some resource that opens the door to the dream of a professional future. Those that do have a dream of being a professional, usually don’t know what that really means. It just means better…
Some of our girls come from obscure highland villages where they live in houses where their Mayan dialect is spoken in the home, often mothers not speaking even Spanish. They attend school where classes are taught in their dialect and Spanish is introduced. They may speak some Spanish with their fathers who have learned by necessity. English is their third language, while still learning Spanish. This is an enormous demand on young girls.
They can not go home due to distance and costs of transportation. Our housemother provides a loving environment, and the house facilities are a luxury hotel compared to home, but it is not home, mom, dad and siblings. Some can not adjust.
FUTURE SALARY EXPECTATIONS PER MONTH, WITH YOUR HELP
- Basico/middle school: $100
- Diversificado/high school: $120-310
- University with 80% English: $550 plus
- High School with English knowledge $650-1275 at a call center.
Each scholarship is an investment in someone’s future. If a girl is not mature enough, not capable enough or not interested enough in doing her part, sponsor money is better spent on a girl who will maximize the opportunity.
The mothers have been in favor of education for their daughters. This has not always been true for the fathers who want the income from their under-educated and undervalued daughters. Discussing economics has helped to change this attitude: do they want to retire on their daughter’s 700 quetzales ($88) per month or Q5000 plus/ $625? Their daughter gains value as education has value to the family. This will probably always be a problem for many of the extreme poor, especially with the alcohol problem.
Determine the family’s economic situation. Most families are experiencing dropping incomes. Spirit needs to know what we need to do to support the scholarship girl to keep her in school. As a result, we have basic scholarship amounts for functioning families and additional amounts for the extreme poor which will cover some or all of the food, personal monthly expenses, and in the case of distant applicants, the additional transportation.
OUR FAMILIES’ INCOMES
Range from $20 to $250 with 3-12 family members living together.
80% of Guatemalans suffer from malnutrition. Ours families are in this group
- They lose infant teeth by 4 years and adult teeth by 15 years
- It is a huge family sacrifice to attend middle school
- They have not had school books
- Bus fare to school costs up to $2.25 per day local, up to $48 for distant students (they live in the house 24/7).
- Parents and older siblings earn $2.50-4.00 per day, when they can work.
- There is no job security, rarely medical work benefits and very little social security to a few.
- I find most things cost more than in the USA. For example January 2018 gas at $3.65 per gallon, Chicken $1.45 per pound. A pizza costs $17
Our objective is to eliminate families who can afford education, but prefer that their girls be a part of Spirit’s English program or want us to pay for their daughter’s education. We need to determine the level of support needed.
Due to being listed on a Guatemalan site promoting availability of scholarships, we had two women contact us in the fall of 2017 on behalf of struggling young women they wanted to help. An objective is to see how this may develop. We accepted seven of their referrals and the girls have greatly astonished and impressed all who have come in contact with them, including current students in the house.
WE NEED TO GROW RELATIONSHIPS WITH PEOPLE WITH A PASSION TO HELP DISADVANTAGED WOMEN, BUT CAN DO SO REALISTICALLY.
A single room to several tiny rooms. Dirt floors to cement floors. Cement block to a few scraps of lumber and sheet metal. No interior plumbing, sporadic running village water or a well.
GODPARENT / GODFAMILY or GODGROUP ANGELS
The daughters of the poor are often regretted because they are girls. The Spirit girls need love, hope, opportunity and respect. One of the ways we do that is through scholarships. When they are chosen by an American Angel, they see themselves differently. The girls write it is wonderful to know that someone, without knowing them or having the obligation, cares and believes in them. Your gift has tremendous impact in validating young women who often grow up hearing how worthless they are. If you believe in them, they can start believing in themselves.
We hope you will have a desire to make a difference in the life of a girl and provide a scholarship for one today.
HOW MUCH DOES THE SCHOLARSHIP COST?
100% of your scholarship money goes to the girls, not corporate structure. This is our pledge to you!
We always closely calculate the upcoming year’s cost to provide the scholarship basics. With the falling dollar and Guatemalan inflation, this is often difficult to predict.
We would like to have a 1 to 1.5 year commitment from our Godparent Angels to allow our girls to complete their education.
AM I THE ONLY SPONSOR FOR “MY” GIRL?
Yes, Spirit assigns only one sponsor per girl. Godparents can be individuals, families or groups that you organize. You will receive monthly emails from your girl. This will allow you to share in your girl’s dreams and successes, as well as reinforce their need to learn English.
WHAT ELSE CAN I DO TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE?
Giving a gift where most needed is a great way to provide help to some of the world’s most vulnerable girls. Your gift to Spirit Education Foundation’s general fund allows us to respond to additional needs of our girls- English reading books, computers and computer programs, medical care, shipping for donations of clothes, shoes, dental supplies, etc.
Send an amount that is right for you and help us change the future of our girls.