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“EI has taught us so many important lessons. We have learned to love education and have gained a new interest in learning. Each one of us now knows that we can be successful professionals. We each have our own positive aspects and support one another in our community in solidarity in whatever we might need.� --Margarita


Empowerment International Annual Report 2012 Letter from Chairperson/President of the Board of Directors [overview of the organization and what impact the organization has had during the past year. The letter should also include some language describing the critical role the board of directors has played ]


Letter from the Executive Director In 2004, I was in Nicaragua, taking vacation time from my technical job in the USA and visiting our fledgling project in Grenada, Nicaragua. Although we had been working in Costa Rica for 6 years, this was our first distribution of school supplies in Nicaragua. While I felt a determination and calling, like nothing before, to help these children and their families improve their lives, it still seemed an impossible vision to actually envision these kids making it all the way through school. Most children in this community were dropping out by the third grade (after they could read). “Rome was not built in a day, but they were laying bricks every hour”. That’s what we have been doing in Nicaragua for the past 9 years. Laying the bricks daily was a labor of love and perseverance by not just myself but by our team and donors. Our carefully placed bricks have laid a foundation in the community to enable these kids to succeed. And now the building efforts are becoming clear. Kids are now routinely finishing primary school and secondary school. We have technical school graduates and even university graduates (absolutely unheard of from this community before). In December 2013, we attended 30 graduations, 20 children graduated from primary school, 8 graduated from high school, and 2 from the university! I was deeply touched to have the honor to walk in formation with our student Jeaneth to pick up her University of Managua diploma. It was all I could do to not shout out in joy and elation (Imagine the embarrassment to Jeaneth!). Of course, there’s nothing necessarily impressive about laying a brick. It’s not a fantastic amount of work. It’s not a grand feat of strength or stamina or intelligence. But laying a brick every day, year after year? That’s how you build something. In Nicaragua, unemployment or underemployment runs around 80%, but by the end of 2013, both our University graduates had job offers. Another student who graduated from Technical School (equivalent to an AA in the USA) has an offer as a technician at a manufacturing site. In our primary and secondary school programs, our graduation and retention rate exceed 95% year after year. You don’t have to build everything you want today, but you do have to find a way to lay another brick.


Mission statement page OUR MISSION & OUR VISION Empowerment International’s mission is to break the cycle of poverty before it is transferred to yet another generation, by building more educated and productive communities. Our vision is to enable every child to go to school and achieve the level of education they desire.

Add pictures


(One page overview of how we achieve our goals, including a list of the programs.) OUR APPROACH Empowerment International, (EI) a Colorado registered nonprofit 501(c)3, has been working in Nicaragua since 2004. EI offers a communitybased holistic educational program to children and families in two extremely impoverished communities in Nicaragua. Most of the families live on less than $2/day and most adult members of the community have an average of a third-grade education and do not always understand the value of the long-term benefits of educating their children. The goals of EIs program are to instill the value of education in the families and children and to remove the physical and emotional barriers that prevent regular attendance of school. This is done through daily home visits where parents are encouraged to send their kids to school and are mentored on how to enhance their children’s education. In addition, during these visits counseling and emotional support are provided to help them find solutions to barriers, physical or otherwise, that prevent children from attending school. EI provides the material support as well such as mandatory school uniforms, shoes, supplies, tuition, and transportation for rural high school students. The program participants have access to tutoring, a computer center, a small library and research center, several enrichment activities, and professional counseling. Since 2009 EI has achieved an school retention rate of over 95% and the percentage of students that go on from primary school to secondary has been over 90% and rising. As of 2014 we now have over 320 students participating in our program.


Subsequent pages will have more detail on the programs. For big ones, likle home visits and tutoring, they get their own page wih pictures. For smaller ones, like cultural and dancing, you can put two, maybe three, per page with pictures.

Try to keep it short with lots of pictures. Bullets are good. People don’t read…. You aren’t applying for grants where you have to be detaled and accurate, you just want to give them a positive impression as someone flips through this. Fabrettos annual report is very good at this.


Jeaneth’s story (need pictures)

Jeaneth’s Story Jeaneth has been with EI for over 8 years. While there were many times she almost dropped out of school due to family issues, she managed to persevere and is finishing up her final year in the university. She studied Hotel Management and interned at Hotel Dario, one of the best hotels in Granada. Due to her fantastic work ethics, English skills, and intelligence, the manager decided to offer her a job, even before she completed her degree. The community now sees her as an example and that it can be a reality to finish school and obtain a decent job. “Personally, the foundation has been very important in my development. Currently, I have a job where I can practice many of the tools EI has offered me like punctuality, dedication, and hard work, among others.”-- Jeaneth


One page on staff, with pictures Empowerment International employs 8 staff whose workplace duties are very broad. Other than the founder, all program staff members are Nicaraguan. We are extremely proud of our dedicated and passionate local staff--all of whom were born and raised in Granada. They are the engine that runs the organization and are vital to its success. • • •

Kathy Adams Executive Director and Founder Scarleth Bermuedez – Program Director Miguel Aguilar - Operations Director

• • • •

Carla Vanessa - Home Visit Coordinator and Coordinator of Santa ana Pamela Pahola Huete, Coordinator of tutoring program, office manager and secondary school home visit coordinator Margarita Yogebeth Arroliga – Field Staff, Medical and Counseling coordinator as well as EI Program Participant (final year of university) Rebecca Aracely


One or two pages on results and the issues you confront and fix. Try to keep it short with lots of pictures. Bullets are good. People don’t read…. OUR RESULTS Since 2009 EI has achieved a school retention averting 95% within the program participants from the two communities we work. As of 2012 over 87% of all school age children are now in school in EI’s first community, up from 55% in 2003! School Retention Rate INSERT DATA

Causes of current attrition rates: •

Reaching an age old enough to want to look for a job instead of staying in school.

Loss of interest in learning

Family moved to Costa Rica to find work.

Causes of Past attrition rates: •

Child forced to care for young ones so parents can work

Pregnancy

Early marriage

Lack of interest on parents behalf

Child forced to work to support family


Parent and or child lacked understanding of value of education

Illness

Attraction to street life and/or gangs

Causes of elementary school repeats: •

Unable to learn by the rote learning system used in the school system

Overcrowding of classes which means children that need help get lost.

Learning challenges not able to be worked with in the public schools due to lack of resources

Not attending the EI tutoring program regularly or at all.

Parents who work all day and don’t have time to help and encourage their students at home

Causes of high school repeats: •

Difficulty in the areas of math, chemistry, and physics and no tutors for them

Poor foundatonal education

Poor attendance

Lack of interest



Financials


Page for corporate donors DONORS [I DON’T KNOW TOO MUCH ABOUT THE 2012 DONORS] AND OTHER PARTNERS. ADDITIONAL “THANKS”? • • •

EEF Individuals Hotel Darío: They offer internship placements for students who are studying tourism and hospitality. They also donate a some school materials.

Hotel Plaza Colon: They donated a small number of backpacks for the high school students.

Hotel con Corazón: They donated $6000 in cash and display our photography program photos in their hotel.

María Celia Chamorro: Local private donor who provides financial assistance to the bike club.

Casa Silas B&B: Provided small donation for school supplies.

Ernesto Montiel: A local business man who provides snacks for the children who come to tutoring regularly two times a year.

Garcia & Bodan Buffete: Provide pro-bono work for EI as needed.

Clínica de Alabama: They offer medical attention and medicine to disadvantaged populations for $1.30 and we buy tickets to distribute to the children in the program when they are sick.

IXCHEN: They offer psychological and gynecological attention at a discounted price. In addition they sometimes gave talks in the monthly school for parents and mammograms for women older than 50 for early detection of breast cancer.

Foundation Hotel con Corazón: Tri-annual meetings to share our tutoring experiences with theirs and give and get feedback.

Café Espressonista – offered training for local student to learn culinary skills



Page(s) for private donors


Outline of empowerment international annual report 2012 (1)