I grew up in a small town in San Miguel, El Salvador. El Zamoran had one school with no more than 10 classrooms. “La escuelita,” (tiny school) was down the street from my grandmother’s home and I remember she walked me there every morning. It became one of my favorite places and where I met my first crush. He had beautiful green eyes, always perfectly dressed and always smelled good. Of course, I never told him. He was the inspiration for my first poems at 10 years old. La Escuelita was always a comforting place. As a kid I never really went anywhere so anytime I had the change to get out of the house I loved it (that’s the real reason I loved it so much).
I never knew how small La Escuelita was until my first day in a Houston school. I was shocked at the size of the school. I was even more shock to know there was a cafeteria and that I would get “free” lunch. At La Escuelita there was no cafeteria, no free food, no AC, no lockers, no gyms or anything like it. La Escuelita had about 10 classrooms with a black board, desks and that’s it!
I’m thankful I grew up in that environment because you learn how to appreciate the little bit you have and never realize how little you actually have until you are exposed to more.
This summer I will be traveling to Nicaragua to work at one Escuelita like the one I mentioned. I’m joining a group of about 14 teachers from Alief ISD to help rebuild a school, and teach English. It all started with one teacher, Jimmy Quezada who shared his project idea with his colleagues and a number of them wanted to join in to help. The main goal is to rebuild a small school of 4 classrooms out of a small district of 5 schools, all located at the bottom of Volcan mombacho about 20 minutes from the city of Granada. I will be away for 16 days and I know it will be an experience of a lifetime.
One of the things we are doing is collecting school supplies for the kiddos. Some say collecting money would be best but as a kid that grew up in a foreign country I know how exciting it is to get something from the United States. The way it smells, the way is packaged and just knowing that it comes from the U.S. it’s just the coolest!
So I’ve decided to collect notebooks, pencils, crayons, pens, paper and anything else that could be helpful and exciting for a 9 year old. I’m also collecting used clothes in excellent condition. I say excellent because often times we donate items just to get rid of them and cannot be used. The photos you see here are from the school where we’ll be working.
So here’s the ask…
If you have any items you would like to donate please email me firstname.lastname@example.org. I’m happy to come pick them up from your home and if that just too weird I’ll meet ya at a public place 🙂
In return, you get to feel good for doing good and I promise to post photos of the rebuilding project, kids receiving the supplies and so much more!
I was one of those kids once, and I know how it feels when people show how much they care. I truly believe everyone has the power to touch someone’s life in so many different ways, this is just one! Be a here for one of those kids!
I and they thank you for it!
Items you can donate