Report from Scholarship Committee 2011

The 2011 committee was composed of the following people: Mimí Baupre, Sarah  Walker, Eva  Flores, Reyna Rocha, Zobeida Barrera, Irianna D. Puentes Avila, Cristobal Curiel Peña, Cecilia Pelayo Pérez and Francisco Ortega

Beginning in  February the committee met to decide the dates and the contents of the upcoming request for scholarship applications from students of Secondary and Conalep.

The committee decided to grant the scholarships to secondary students who wanted to study for their baccalaureate at Conalep in order to facilitate communication with the recipients.  Since members of our committee work in the Conalep, this guarantees the direct and almost daily contact with the students, beside being able to observe first hand their performance inside the school, not only in terms of academics but also in terms of behavior.

The Committee established the requirements that should be included in the scholarship application, such as the minimal average of qualifications and a few questions that us allowed us to understand the aspirations of the students and to know little more about their family situation. This information determined who would be granted scholarships.  In addition, this year we asked the students to commit to a minimum of hours of community service and also require the parents to be active in the activities of Los Amigos, by means of a letter that they had to sign and attach to the request for scholarship.

We believe that the latter two requirements had an influence on the fact that not as many requests were received this year.

We received 89 applications from students in Secondary and Conalep, and did a first selection of 43 students, and later, after interviewing them, we decided to support 36 students with the payment of tuition and the purchase of a uniform for Conalep.  It should be noted that a large part of the budget came from a grant from Rotary that allowed us to implement the ” Learning of for Life ” program  together with the group from Chacala.

Since being chosen the scholarship holders have taken part in several activities:

1.-Participation in the first stage of the course “Learning of for Life “  in Puerto. Vallarta.

Once chosen, the scholarship recipients were notified of the start of the program, which consists of three stages over the course of the school year.  The first one it was at the Library inPuerto Vallarta.  The students travelled in the Conalep bus, together with the students from Chacala.  Upon arrival, they were registered, received a breakfast and were delivered folders to take  notes during the course.

In general, the students showed great interest and took part keenly in all the activities in the program that was given.  The course had a duration of 6 hours, included a recess for the lunch that was also provided for them in the library.

Ultimately the students demonstrated great satisfaction for what they learned and remained satisfied to have been present at this first part of the project “Learning of for Life ”

2.-Speaking to the primary schools on the prevention of the Dengue Fever

To undertake this activity, students first undertook an investigation of the disease.  They assembled in the audio-visual room of the Conalep and two members of the Rotary Club did a brief presentation to them on this disease.

Later there were formed into six teams which assembled at the Xaltemba Restaurant, in order to come to an agreement on how to prepare an explanatory conversation about Dengue Fever that  they could have with  primary school children in La Peñita de Jaltemba.

It is necessary to highlight that much of the success of the project was the result of creativity of the students.  They were given total freedom on how to present.  The only thing that was asked of them was that the presentation was for small children so they should avoid difficult language and it would have to be entertaining and rapid.

At the established date, they went to the selected schools, (six primary ones), and they explained in groups the importance of preventing the disease, besides explaining with sheets, drawings or a representation.  They also delivered some sweets as a prize for the attention, disposition and participation of the small ones in the presentation.

3.-Distribution of leaflets for the prevention of Dengue Fever

Together with members of the Rotary Club of Jaltemba Bay, flyers were delivered on one Sunday in the Plaza to convince the population of the importance of cleaning patios and houses to avoid the spread of Dengue Fever.  A total of 700 flyers were distributed to the community and some colonies of La Peñita

4.-Volunteers for the JABR Clinic

This activity takes place every year, one year in Rincon de Guayabitos’s and the next in La Peñita. The purpose of this program is the free sterilization of dogs and cats with the labour provided by volunteers.

This year, the clinic took place in La Peñita.  The scholarship recipients took part from November 16 to November 19.  Groups were formed of between 10 and 7 pupils with a  group working each  day for about two hours.

During this time the students had the opportunity to see the procedure from the receipt up to the delivery of the animals.

They helped in the sterilization of the materials, monitored the recovery of some animals and were observers in the accomplishment of some surgeries.

We believe that this activity, though it was hard for many, was at the same time very educational and are sure that conscience was created towards the treatment and mistreatment that many of these animals receive, especially the street animals.