IT & Knowledge Center Facilitator IT & Knowledge Center Facilitator Nueva Mercedes, Guatemala Li Ch'utam Non-profit | Li Ch'utam
Provide hands on support to children and the community to enhance educational opportunities & improve IT literacy!

Project Details

Support the educational development of indigenous students by providing supplementary IT based courses, extracurricular games & activities, & classroom support!

Founded in 2009 in the Polochic Valley - Guatemala, Li Chu'tam vision is to promote sustainable development through cutting-edge initiatives at community-level. The potential for economic development and prosperity for the inhabitants of this region is hampered by a poor level of infrastructure (barely hardened roads, lack of electricity and water grid), rising unemployment and very limited access to education.

 

Currently we implement four projects:

 

Classroom Support:

In order to help students in the lower Basico grades (ages 7-13), our field volunteers assist local teachers (at their request) in their classrooms. Since many of the classrooms have a high student to teacher ratio and some teachers may be teaching multiple grades at once, our volunteers help bring that ratio down thus improving the learning environment. It can also be great personal development for our volunteers to gain teaching experience or to share their own teaching strategies with the schools.

Extracurricular Activities:

In Guatemala, students only attend public school in the mornings. Through our Volunteer Program, we are able to offer a wide range of afternoon activities to the local school children that combine learning with having fun. They can choose between various activities ranging from arts & crafts, playing educational games, sports, Spanish & English classes, and reading. Many of these courses are based on the unique skills of our volunteers so the options are endless!

 

As of April 2018, our Knowledge & IT Center was completed which allows us to provide a free computer lab to support students (and adults) within the community. The lab is open for students to conduct their own research or play educational games (such as Khan Academy) but our volunteers also offer classes on typing, how to use the Internet and Microsoft Office applications, and basic coding.

 

Our Knowledge and IT Center also has a small library that is available to the community as well. We have a One-on-One Literacy Tutoring program that trains middle school students on how to teach younger students basic reading and writing skills. This program gives agency to our older students, so they can help tutor the younger children in their families and the community.

 

In addition to afternoon activities, each year Li Ch’utam invites graduating 6th graders on a year-end field trip outside of the valley. These trips are very well received by teachers and students alike and offer a rare opportunity for the children to explore beyond their village and learn more about their heritage and country. Popular field trips include visiting museums in Guatemala City and the Maya ruins of Tikal!

Scholarships:

Secondary education (starting at 13 years old) is not publicly funded in Guatemala and therefore costs must be covered by families. Most of the families in the Polochic Valley are very poor so our scholarships cover tuition, transportation, supplies, and other school fees. We work closely with the families in the valley to understand their income level and any other challenges students may face in the home to better tailor our assistance to them. With the support of private contributions, we are able to ensure a child’s access to further education.


Family Projects:

Li Ch’utam works beyond the children of the valley and has built strong relationships with many of their families as well. Our family oriented projects aim to provide broader support to families while also giving them the opportunity to work together and have fun as a unit. Such projects include a vegetable garden, chocolate making, and adult educational & talent development courses. 

 

Our volunteers work hands-on with community members to plan and implement the above projects all year long, so we are constantly recruiting talented individuals! Joining our volunteer team is a challenging opportunity that suits highly motivated people interested in pursuing a career within international development and who want to make a visible difference in the lives of others. 

The main focus of the project is on
NPO Status
Yes, registered non-profit organization
Foundation Year
2006
Contact Person
Jessica Randall
Spoken Languages
English

Social Impact

Education is still a privilege only few can afford as most rural communities are affected by low income, high levels of poverty and low access to basic services.

 

We believe that education, information dissemination and access to technology are keys to enhance livelihoods in rural areas. We strive to grant technology access to the community, especially children and teenagers, empowering their learning trough educational software and basic technical IT knowledge.

 

Our organization impacts 600 local community members and, when we have the resources, 3,000-4,000 inhabitants within the Polochic Valley of Guatemala, some of the most marginalized and disadvantaged areas in Guatemala. We have successfully improved the reading, writing, and mathematic skills of students over the years and have been able to fund 50 students each year to attend school beyond the primary level. 

Pursued Sustainable Development Goals

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