A nun checks the work of a boy at a desk

New students are welcomed

In January, 2,015 children and trainees arrived into our schools, day care and training centres in Brazil, Tanzania, Guatemala and Honduras. These children come from some of the most deprived regions in the world and were desperate for the chance to learn, so that they can find good jobs and escape from poverty.

Many children arrive with complex issues arising from a difficult early life. They suffer from the stress and trauma of poverty leading to malnutrition and other serious health issues as well as being behind in their general education and often unable to speak their national language. The Sisters take great care to support the children with the nutrition and healthcare support they need, additional classes to support their learning and get them to the educational level they need to thrive at school and leave their lives of poverty.

CountrySchoolNew students
BrazilBrasilia 225
BrazilSao Paulo elementary98
BrazilBrasilia Nursery80
BrazilSao Paulo Nursery 163
GuatemalaZona 6252
GuatemalaZona 13282
GuatemalaZona 13 Nursery101
TanzaniaDodoma Boys’ School171
TanzaniaKiluvya Nursery98
Sister Margie and three boys at a table in Dodoman with coloured pencils and paper

Dodoma Boystown starts the first term

In Dodoma, Tanzania, the boys at the new school were welcomed for their first full term. A total of 171 boys are now in the care of the Sisters at this brand new school and thriving. They are excited and boisterous, loving all the new experiences they have to look forward to.

In their first few weeks these new boys sat tests to determine their learning levels and to see what support they needed to progress. All the boys follow the national curriculum of academic subjects and will also  study vocational courses in electrical installation and solar technology, carpentry, computing and welding, targeting future jobs in the region.

Outside of the classroom the boys were also enjoying the luxury of playtime and hobbies and particularly spending time learning art with Sr Margie!

Players sitting at a long table playing Go

Thriving at school

All our children are encouraged to make the most of their time at school, to work hard in the classroom but to make the most of their spare time too. They take up hobbies such as Go, Chess and other stimulating activities so that they can continue to develop their minds outside of the classroom and to have fun!

In January the girls at Chalco achieved 3rd place in the regional chess competition and our girls in Guatemala were lucky enough to be invited to a Go competition and managed to come in second place! Go is a board game that was invented in China more than 2,500 years ago and is believed to be the oldest board game continuously played to the present day. It encourages critical thinking and long-term strategic thought.

Watch the video below to see our students in action alongside the other players at the competition.

Go Competition in Guatemala
A group of alumni sit around a table eating

In other news from our schools

The Adlas Boys school received a donation from a local organisation in the form of a new vehicle! This will be used to teach the boys how to drive safely and to pass their driving tests. Where we can we teach all of our students how to drive. It gives them freedom and independence when they graduate and also a better chance of finding work.

Brasilia Girls’ school saw the return of 107 alumni to the school for a reunion. The alumni at our schools are a vital part of the success of the Sisters’ mission in helping the most impoverished children. The alumni use their real life experiences as graduates of the Sisters of Mary schools to help the next generation of students. They often return to the schools for a visit, celebrate with a special reunion or even volunteer their time helping the new students.