Big Dreams for Little Elder – CadaNiño
(Students of the Cada Niño Community Center)
They’re called “red zones” in Guatemala: communities plagued by violence, gangs, and extortion. Those living in the neighborhoods receive little support and encouragement, and opportunities are limited. But in Guatemala City’s Colona Santa Fe, elementary and middle school students and their families believe long-term change is possible—thanks to the work of Orphan Outreach’s newest family preservation ministry partner, CadaNiño.
Little Elder lives in the community with his mom and brother. He’s thankful for how hard his mom works to provide a loving home, and he wants to make her proud. In the mornings, Elder attends the local elementary school. And at the CadaNiño community care center, he now has a safe place to learn, study, and spend time doing what has become his favorite thing.
Every afternoon, Elder gets to become a computer programmer. And every afternoon, he gets to dream about a better future for him and his family.
Cada Niño students gather at the center for tutoring, mentoring, bible study, worship, and computer training. The approach to care is innovative, and the focus on technology training is changing the trajectory of the community as it changes the lives of the children.
Elder loves what he’s learning so much that he attends CadaNiño every afternoon. His grades in Math and English have improved significantly, and he says he wants to have a career in technology when he grows up.
“CadaNiño means “every child,” and the work being done at the community center in Colona Santa Fe is truly focused on just that—giving every child the support they need to thrive. The students aren’t the only ones actively involved at Cada Niño. Parents are asked to support the program by volunteering at least one hour a month at the community center or assisting with community cleanup efforts done by the students each month.
In a country where computer classes are required but computers are rarely available for students, the computer classes offered at CadaNiño offer more than fun learning opportunities for Elder and his friends. They provide a practical gateway to future employment. The students learn creative thinking, reasoning and logic, and collaborative teamwork. Basic computer skills are just the beginning; students learn web design, graphics design, and animation. And scholarships provided by Robotis offer training in robotics, electronics and engineering.
(Students of the Cada Niño Community Center learning with computers)
Currently, over 100 students are enrolled in the after-school program. Thanks to the generosity of Porter’s customers, those students are ensured quality teaching and mentoring, bible study, educational resources, and even more computer technology classes and equipment. For little Elder, those gifts help his dreams of being a computer programmer come true.