Newsletter, July 2011
Centro Maya, the day centre for disabled children.
At the start of last year the centre went through some rough times. Nowadays we experience some calmer times and we can even say we are flying high.
- Since September 2010, the centre has been registered in Guatemala as a N.G.O. (non governmental organisation) under the name of "Centro Maya Servicio Integral" (www.centromayaserviciointegral.org).
- The centre has been recognised by the Central American organisation for disabled people ‘CONADI’.
- After a long search and long deliberation we decided to rent a new building in November 2010. The building needed some changes and expansion but with the help of a local contractor and many volunteers that wasn't a problem. We moved in with the children in January 2011. We agreed a monthly rent with the owner of the building, until we would have enough money to buy it. And... we have managed to do so! A big step forward for the survival of the centre.
- We also rent and use the neighbouring plot of land besides the main building. A toilet and two rooms are found on this plot. The rest of the plot, without buildings on it, will be used as a playground and can be used for an eventual expansion. At the moment we are negotiating the price of the plot.
- As we now have good accommodation, the school for children with hearing and speaking problems has moved in with us.
- A nurse has been added to our team. She stays in contact with the doctors and medical organisations and supports the parents.
- We hope a speech coach will also join our team soon.
- Early last year, the Aldeas (the nearby communities on the other side of the mountains) asked us to start up an annex to the centre over there. A careful start to the organisation of the annex has been started. A crucial part for this annex is the financial support from the Liliane foundation.
- Marinella Bacho, a former volunteer, managed for her and her family to be sent to Guatemala by an Italian organisation for a period of three years. Her task is to start up employments projects that will help the disabled adults to be less financially dependent.
- The Bureau of Human Rights Watch in Santiago de Atitlán has started a network in which several organisations aimed on supporting victims of violence are represented. Our psychologist is also part of this network and because of this victims of violence amongst others are helped in our centre.
The scholarship fund.
It must be clear that the costs for the Centro Maya are increasing because of all these new developments. However, the donations to the centre remain the same. As a result of this we struggle to fulfil the obligations we have towards our students. Most of the times we have to reject requests for further education. This is a pity because the children are very motivated.
At the moment there are 44 students, for whom the education is entirely or partly paid for by the centre. The division over the different studies is:
- 9 pupils at primary school
- 18 pupils at secondary school
- 14 students in vocational studies
- - 3 students at university
The social fund.
Because of the budget we also have to limit ourselves to the most poignant situations:
- Six families receive food support
- Two children receive money for medication
- We pay a woman for cleaning the Catholic School (it cuts both ways)
- Support in emergency situations: such as emergency visit to the doctor or hospital or to pay for medication.
The micro credits that were given over the past years have either been paid back or transformed into a donation.
Finally I would like to let you know we enjoy the laptops we received to take back to Guatemala. They are used by the children, using study programmes on CDs, and by the nurse and psychologist. Also some of our scholarship students are helped by them.
The board has changed on 15 July 2011:
- The correspondence address of the foundation is Wibautlaan 14, 4386EC Vlissingen.
Stichting Steun de Maya's, Zuiderbaan 7, 4386CK Vlissingen
ING Bank Amsterdam
BIC (SWIFT)- code INGBNL2A