The following are some quick facts about Sagrada Familia:
- Ages served: All ages are served.
- Facility description: A small community building centrally located in one of Antigua’s residential neighborhoods.
- Education: Most of the children enrolled here attend public schools in Antigua. The center provides their school supplies and uniforms, along with afterschool training and tutoring.
- Academic schedule: Typically begins in mid-January and ends in late October. Students enjoy summer break during the months of November through mid-January, and a two-week winter break in June.
- Nutrition: Children who live close enough receive a nutritional lunch each day.
- Medical care: Children receive medical care as needed from a local physician who occasionally visits the center’s clinic.
Located just southeast of Mexico, Guatemala is the most populous country in Central America. Its spectacular mountains boast a wealth of natural resources and stunning biodiversity. For centuries, this land served as the core territory of the Mayan civilization.
Following two centuries of Spanish colonization, Guatemala gained its independence in the early 19th century, only to endure another 150 years of political instability and civil unrest. Additionally, this area is prone to devastating natural disasters, such as earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, and hurricanes which cause mudslides and flooding. Despite recent economic growth and successful democratic elections, Guatemala still struggles with widespread poverty, illiteracy, crime and high rates of unemployment and underemployment.
Although a popular tourist destination due to its beautiful examples of Spanish colonial architecture, Antigua is no exception to these maladies. Here in Guatemala’s old colonial capital, the Sagrada Familia welfare center serves as a beacon of hope. Sagrada Familia’s mission is to provide Antigua’s impoverished children with the educational, nutritional and medical support they so desperately need. With the well-rounded education they receive, students here are given the opportunity to break the cycle of poverty and rise above the difficult socioeconomic circumstances from which they come.
Quick Facts about GUATEMALA:
- Population: 17,245,346 (2018 est.)
- Languages Spoken: Spanish 60%, Amerindian languages 40% (23 officially recognized Amerindian languages include Quiche, Cakchiquel, Kekchi, Mam, Garifuna and Xinca)
- Unemployment Rate: 8% (2018 est.), with high underemployment
- Poverty Rate: 3% (2017 est.)