Project Amigo was established in 1984 as a donor-funded scholarship program for bright but impoverished students in the farmworkers community of Colima, Mexico, to attend primary school through university (which they are otherwise unable to afford). Applicant requirements include recommendation by a teacher based on academic achievement and financial need. These students get a Christmas Fiesta, a trip to the beach, picnics with visiting volunteers, and assistance with some vision and dental problems. They must maintain high grades, participate in weekly homework clubs, mentor younger students, provide 10 hours of community service monthly, and write a monthly letter to their sponsors.
Past graduates have included teachers, lawyers, architects, engineers and doctors. One of them is Amaranta Hernández (pictured) who received a bachelors degree last year and has been sponsored by our PV Sunset Rotarian Marilyn Klaus. Amaranta and leader Alma Bayardo spoke to us by Zoom from Mexico.
During the COVID Pandemic, some classes in Colima are being broadcast on TV. High school students are using their smart phones and laptops for classes, and elementary students have been coming to computers at the cyber center. Scholarship families have been receiving monthly food box distributions.
Rotarians are invited to join them for a Humanitarian Service Work Week, sponsor 1 or more students (contact Marilyn for details), connect Project Amigo to other Rotary Clubs and other civic groups, make contributions to their Wish List, ask employers to match your financial contributions, and follow Project Amigo on social media. It is a 501c3 non-profit charity, with headquarters in the village of Cofradía de Suchitlán. See website for more information. Thanks for helping to end poverty through education!