Our focus is reaching vulnerable children in Baja California where early learning resources are scarce. The poorest children often come from generations of poverty and illiteracy. Our goal is to change the overall perspective of education, with the understanding that it is the starting point for change.
In the country of Mexico, 50% of students do not have the opportunity to continue their education beyond 6th grade. Sadly in many cases even prior to that! There are several factors that play into low completion rates and often they are interconnected. The impact of concentrated poverty on student achievement compounds over time. More recent research has shown that a family's exposure to neighborhood poverty over two consecutive generations can reduce a child's cognitive ability by more than half of a standard deviation. Similarly, growing up in a high-poverty neighborhood has been shown to reduce the probability of completing basic or early education in Mexico. As with most third world countries, education is not prioritized, as the understanding of its value is obscure to the poor and marginalized. Most public schools in the areas we support are rarely open due to local funding. In addition, space is often limited in public schools, which forces students to have to travel outside their communities to find larger schools with more capacity. Transportation costs increase the financial burden and parents are hesitant to send their children alone on public transportation.
Our after-school homework clubs were created to support the local communities educational needs. Our clubs meet three times a week in the afternoon and offer academic support to each individual child. Although distance learning was offered at times during the pandemic, most children didn't have access to computers and were having to obtain lessons on mobile phones. Our clubs offer access to wi-fi, computers and other supplies to help support all the kids academic needs.
MI ESCUELITA (HOMEWORK CLUB)
We realized years prior to forming SSFC that as a small group of caring individuals, we had a responsibility to focus on offering educational support in and around the communities we were serving in. We also understood our limitations and knew that finding schools with adequate space to accommodate the number of children needing an education within these communities could be near to impossible. With these factors in mind we broadened our goals and evaluated the most effective way to have the greatest impact in this community. Hence the creation of our Homework Clubs now known as Mi Escuelita.
At the end of 2019 we agreed as an organization to help fund our first homework clubs in partnership with Gracia del Calvario. The two locations under this partnership are operated and staffed by our church partners.
Throughout the pandemic we found that our homework clubs became incredibly vital in the community as all schools were closed and children without access to computers or simple Wifi connectivity had no other place to go for support
Our goal is to improve public health and safety by decreasing the overpopulation of unwanted animals in the communities we serve. By offering animal education, advocacy, and animal welfare programs to the communities that we support, we will decrease disease and parasitism which effects impoverished communities around the world.
GARDEN AND NUTRITION EDUCATION
You've heard the saying "a healthy body supports a healthy mind"? Well it's so much more than that. Malnutrition adversely affects the physiological and mental capacity of individuals; which in turn hampers productivity levels. A two-way link exists between malnutrition and poverty. Malnutrition produces conditions of poverty by reducing the economic potential of the population and likewise, poverty reinforces malnutrition by increasing the risk of food insecurities.
Our garden and nutritional eduction programs can increase students’ nutritional knowledge, willingness to try fruit and vegetables, and positive attitudes about eating foods that are better for them.