facts about Escuela Santa Luisa:
- Ages served: 4 – 18 years
- Facility description: A cluster of buildings — some in need of expansion — contains classrooms, a kitchen, a computer room, offices, and an open gym. The school also maintains a small garden with flowers and balsam trees (for which the region is known economically).
- Education: Children receive instruction in core academic subjects. The Sisters here also offer moral guidance and instruction in vocational skills.
- Academic schedule: In El Salvador, the school year typically begins in mid-January and ends in early November. Students enjoy summer break from early- or mid-November through the first week of January.
- Health: Local congregational support helps provide health services for the children, and a local physician visits regularly to monitor the children’s health and well-being.
Abundant in rivers, lakes, and fertile, tropical farmland, El Salvador’s wealth of natural beauty traverses a vast central plateau bordered by Pacific coastal plains to the south and rugged mountains to the north. For centuries, several Mesoamerican nations called this land home, including the Lenca, Olmec, Maya and Pipil/Cutcatlec.
However, this smallest and most densely populated Central American nation is particularly susceptible to natural disasters like earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, and it has been plagued by chronic political and economic instability for more than a century. High unemployment rates, rising inflation, organized crime and a soaring birthrate leave many Salvadorans to live in abject poverty.
The border town of Sonsonate is no exception to these maladies. It is here, however, that Escuela Santa Luisa serves as a beacon of hope to residents of this community. Nearly a century ago, Sisters of the Daughters of Charity established Escuela Santa Luisa to provide a safe haven and sound education for the orphaned, abandoned, and impoverished children of Sonsonate. The school continues in its mission today. Here, these deserving children receive an opportunity to rise above the difficult socioeconomic circumstances from which they have come.
Facts about el salvador:
- Population: 6.84 million (2020)
- Languages Spoken: Spanish (official) and Nahua (among some Amerindians)
- Poverty Rate: 26.2% (2020)
- Unemployment Rate: 6.3% (2020) with high underemployment
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