Gran Pacifica continues to support the “English for Elementary School” Program in the community of California. There are 28, 5th and 6th grade students who are very happy to attend English classes once a week.
Helio Alfaro, who works for Gran Pacifica in our social projects, is also in charge of teaching these children. Professor Helio recognizes that it is an innovative program that offers a great opportunity for these students to form a base in English before entering high school. The Ministry of Education sadly does not have an English program for primary schools in Nicaragua. This makes the work of Professor Helio and Gran Pacifica all that much more impactful.
Gran Pacifica not only provides an English teacher, but also gives materials to students and teachers, so they can use them in class as important tools in the teaching-learning process.
It is important to understand exactly why these English classes are so important for the children of California. For over a century, harvesting sugar cane for the local rum company, Flor de Caña, has been a major source of work those living California, and the areas surrounding Gran Pacifica. Over just the past two years, however, the Flor de Caña Company has phased out all harvesting by hand, and does all of their harvesting with machinery now. It’s like having the Industrial Revolution happen in just a few months for the people in this area. With the sugar cane harvesting jobs gone, the largest source of jobs in the area is now in tourism, typically in areas such as accounting, architecture, construction, legal services, etc. These jobs all require the ability to speak English. This is why it is so important to teach English to the children in the communities around Gran Pacifica.
Parents and students have expressed their gratitude to Gran Pacifica for the various projects in the community, not the least of which is the English language learning program. These kids have a dream of one day being bilingual, and getting good paying jobs in the tourism industry. Gran Pacifica is helping them to reach that goal!
The English teaching program is just one of many social responsibility programs that Gran Pacifica implements in the local community. This past Christmas, Gran Pacifica’s new full-time Corporate Social Responsibility volunteer, Holly Wilson, worked with the Beauty for Ashes Project to bring Christmas to the children living in the Chureca Dump community. Presents, including toys, clothes and food, were delivered to over 100 families in the Chureca Dump community. The Beauty for Ashes Project is the brainchild of former Gran Pacifica intern Kara Westermann, who was so moved by the plight of those living in the Chureca Dump community that she chose to dedicate herself fulltime to helping this community.
Other Corporate Social Responsibility projects that Gran Pacifica has recently engaged in include cleaning up the San Diego Beach this past December. In addition, Gran Pacifica partnered with the charitable organization Chair the Love, as well as the Managua-Tiscapa Rotary Club, to donate over 100 wheelchairs to those in need in the communities of Managua and Villa El Carmen, the community that Gran Pacifica is neighbors with.
Professor Helio with his students
Corporate Social Responsibility is a cornerstone of the mission of Gran Pacifica, and we are so pleased to have so many dedicated people such as Professor Helio Alfaro, Holly Wilson, Kara Westermann, the members of Chair the Love, Beauty for Ashes and the Managua-Tiscapa Rotary Club to be involved in making our vision of Corporate Social Responsibility come to life.
Making the world a better place starts one step at a time, and Gran Pacifica is so happy to have dedicated staff and partners who are willing to take those first steps every day.