Programa de Becas – Club Rotario Puerto Vallarta Sur
For the school year 2016-2017 Rotary eClub One provided scholarship funds of $250USD each to Ismael de Jesus Garcia and Andrea Pong Reyes, both attending Secundaria (Middle School) in the area of Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexico. This is the second year our Club as provided scholarship funds to Ismael and Andrea.
In the early 1990’s Club Rotario Puerto Vallarta Sur and the Rotary Club of Sebastopol, California teamed up to build a school in the village of Paso Ancho on the outskirts of Puerto Vallarta. Until that point, for the most part, Primary students were being taught “under the trees”. The two Clubs combined efforts and, with the help of local residence, built a proper school which is still the main Primary school in a much expanded community of Paso Ancho. Once the school was complete we found many of the brightest young students were leaving school after they completed grade six as their parents could not afford to have them continue in school. They did not have the money for school supplies and, if the children were not in school they may be able to find ways to make a little money to help support the family. Programa de Becas started for the 1995-1996 school year to assist some of these students wishing to continue their education.
Programa de Becas is a program designed to assist the students of very poor families in the Puerto Vallarta area continue their education beyond primary school. Scholarship money comes from Canadian and American Rotary Clubs, visiting Rotarians and other individuals visiting the area. The aim of the program is to pair sponsors with a student and they remain “paired” until either the sponsor or the student drops out of the program. At this point we have had a number of sponsors stay with their students from grade seven until the student has graduated from university.
Programa de Becas has split into six different programs with a current student membership of about 600 students all sponsored by individuals or Rotary Clubs. Many of our students who would normally not have gone past grade six have now graduated from university. Scholarships run from $250USD to $350USD depending on where the student is in the school system. The scholarship pays only a portion of the annual educational expenses but it is enough that the student is able to remain in school. The total number of students who have passed through the program would be well in excess of one thousand.
One of this year’s recipients is Andrea, a 15 year old, who wishes to complete her studies for a good career. Her after school activities are doing her homework, studying, and helping around the house.
The second is Ismael who wishes to complete his studies and go into sales. His after school activities include homework, studying, and training for soccer.