Club Rotario (Rotary) of Zihuatanejo recently received the largest grant in its 30+ year history to provide “basic access to education” for schools built by local charity Por los Niños (for the children) Educational Charity. The grant of $44,250 usd (about $700,000+ pesos) will provide furnishings, lights and fans, fixtures for new classrooms built by Por Los Niños, and will provide language classes for teachers and students in the area.
Por Los Niños de Zihuatanejo, AC is a Mexican non-profit, public-benefit corporation established for the administration and distribution of the funds raised by Zihuatanejo’s annual Sailfest activities. Each year, boaters from around the world sail into Zihuatanejo to provide rides and to enjoy activities that raise funds for education. These funds are then used by Por Los Niños to provide enhanced educational opportunities for the economically-disadvantaged children of Zihuatanejo.
Since 2002, the volunteers of Por Los Niños educational charity have donated, raised funds, and built more than ninety classrooms, bathrooms, kitchens, and playgrounds for disadvantaged children in the Zihuatanejo area. Nearly five thousand young students have benefited from their efforts. The charity’s vision is to provide an educational opportunity for each and every child in Zihuatanejo, regardless of income level or social status.
This is a photo of an old classroom at 3 de Diciembre school in Barrio Nuevo, on the outskirts of Zihuatanejo.
Photo of new classroom at 3 de Diciembre school built by funds raised and donated by Por Los Niños.
So special, is that the some of these new school facilities that will be furnished were built with $21,000 usd raised and donated by a little eleven-year-old boy, Austin Brown, who is in the sixth grade at Providence Christian Academy in Springdale, Arkansas, USA. Austin raised the money by making packages of “fun sand” (like Play-Doh®) and artificial snow and selling them at carnivals and outlets.
Austin Brown (blue shirt) is eleven years old from the Providence Christian Academy in Springdale, Arkansas, USA. He raised $21,000 usd to build new classrooms. Now, the Rotary grant will furnish them.
Now, the Rotary International Humanitarian Grant of $44,250 usd (about $700,000+ pesos) will provide complete furnishings for three new classrooms, lights and fans, fixtures for the new bathrooms, glass in all the school windows, and a fully-equipped, air-conditioned computer room for the Centenario de la Revolución school in La Joya. The 3 de Diciembre school in Barrio Nuevo, will receive classroom furnishings, lights and fans, and kitchen equipment.
A second component of the Rotary grant addresses “adult literacy”. Por Los Niños will establish English classes for 45 to 60 teachers in the area, and Hospitality English classes for the students’ parents to promote enhanced employment opportunities.
Long-time Sailfest volunteer and California Rotarian, Carl McDaniel made it all happen, working for two years on the grant application along with Lorenzo Marburt, who is the local administrator of the Por Los Niños Foundation. Por Los Niños is named as a “cooperating organization” for the Rotary grant, and will handle all the day-to-day chores such as purchasing and contracting. Club Rotario (Rotary) of Zihuatanejo will administer the grant funds.
The community is grateful to all the efforts of so many people to help the young scholars of Zihuatanejo. And now, these efforts have been recognized and supported by such a respectable organization as Rotary International.
That should put a smile on everyone’s face!
For more information about Ixtapa Zihuatanejo and the surrounding areas, see: