Another school year officially began today! The children of La Limonada were welcomed back into their bright and cheerfully painted academies for a new school year, which runs from January through October.
The teachers each decorated their classrooms in a special way to welcome their students. Instead of jumping directly into normal classes, the students enjoyed games and special treats. With many new teachers and new students, this is a wonderful way for everyone to get to know each other before jumping into their lessons.
Children in La Limonada attend overcrowded and underfunded public schools for only half a day, often leaving them unattended in violent homes and streets. That’s why, through the faithful support of child and teacher sponsors, the academies supplement what the children are not learning in school (like critical thinking skills!), offer a well-lit space to do their homework with a teacher to answer questions, a place to learn about Jesus and how to follow him, as well as other holistic development activities.
In the morning, students arrive in time for breakfast before starting classes at 9:00 a.m. They learn to wash their hands before eating and take a daily vitamin. After breakfast, they brush their teeth all together. They are released at 11:00 a.m. to return home and attend school outside of the community for the afternoon. At 1:20 p.m., the afternoon students arrive for their lunch, also washing their hands and taking their vitamins, before classes begin at 2:00 p.m.
Some praises and prayer requests from the team in Guatemala as they begin the new year:
- Praise God for keeping the academies safe during the month of December when classes are not in session. It is often a time of increased violence, but this year December was a peaceful month without any loss.
- Pray for the children’s attendance in the academies. Attendance in the morning classes is often a challenge because parents struggle to wake up early and help their children get to class.
- Pray for the children to continue to engage throughout the year. It is a temptation to drop out when the life of deep poverty puts strains on their families or when facing abuse or trauma.
- Pray for the hearts of children as they adapt to the changes of a new school year, with new friends and new teachers.
- Pray for the teachers – that they can be filled with God’s wisdom and love, so they will be a blessing to the children and families they serve. Pray for their strength, love, and patience to be renewed each day so they can continue to serve with faithfulness and gratitude.
- Pray that God would bless and protect the families of the teachers. Many of our teachers live in La Limonada and face similar challenges as the students.
- Pray for the parents to wake up early to bring their children to the academies. Pray that God would provide them with work and opportunities, while knowing their children are safely being loved and cared for.
- Pray for the parents to receive God’s wisdom in raising their children and for their attendance at School for Parents this year.
We have shared more photos on this Facebook Album.