GVR has established a new Vocational Education Program with Project Amigo in Colima, Mexico.  Our first student is Maria Guadalupe "Lupita" Apolinar Martinez.  Read the full story at the 'Read More' link below. 

During GVR's work week visit to Project Amigo last winter, then President Charlie identified a need to reach kids and young adults who could not be part of the Project Amigo traditional educational track due to lack of parent support, life events, or other factors.  We asked Project Amigo about the possibility of establishing a vocational program to hopefully provide additional opportunities for these kids. 


Over the spring and summer, Project Amigo worked on the idea and worked with club leadership to come up with a plan.  We are happy to announce that we and Project Amigo have established the Glacier Valley Rotary Project Amigo Vocational Education Program.  Under the new program, Project Amigo will identify students that fall outside the traditional path but display potential for self-improvement that would come from attending a vocational program available in the Colima area.  The club will pay for the students’ school registration and tuition, food supplies for classes, one meal per day, transportation to and from school, and staff support.  Vocational programs are shorter in duration than a traditional education, typically lasting from one to three years.  As the program starts, we anticipate assisting one student at a time, although one student may overlap with others. 


During their recent visit to Juneau, Rob Crandall and Heidi Steckler – our work week coordinators - were excited to hear that we were working with Project Amigo to establish this program and made a significant contribution to the club to assist us with funding to get it started.  Their generous donation is greatly appreciated.  Our first student is really a joint venture with Rob, Heidi and their kids.


Our first student is Lupita who lives in Cofradia.  She is 24, has finished junior high, and wants to study cooking. With a cooking degree she hopes to be able to work in nicer restaurants in Colima and places like La Reserva just up from Cofradia. Currently, she works 2-3 nights per week at a taco stand and sometimes fills in cleaning houses at Project Amigo. Project Amigo has found her to be hardworking with a lot of potential, but has had a hard time in life. Her sister died and Lupita fills in as a mom to her niece and nephew. She has no real job prospects in Cofradia and wants to do more. She is also starting to study high school online, which is free.  Project Amigo felt that she is an excellent first candidate and we agree! 


We will have periodic updates from Lupita as her school progresses and she will be involved in the same student support system that Project Amigo provides to its other students.  We are hopeful that this will provide a new opportunity for Lupita!