Sprouts of Hope

This dynamic program serves preschool children from birth to age 6 and their families through quality education and home visits. ASAPROSAR-trained teachers promote healthy physical, mental and social development in villages where children’s schooling is often cut short after first grade. The program’s name — “Brotes de Esperanza” (“Sprouts of Hope” in Spanish) — reflects its aim of nurturing the potential of each young child.

Children ages 3 to 6, who would otherwise be playing at home on dirt floors with minimal supervision, instead are offered a Head Start-style curriculum of reading readiness, art, drama and personal hygiene in a fun, safe and stimulating environment. The average class size is 25 students.

With funds provided by ASAPROSAR, the mothers take turns preparing a daily nutritious lunch. For many of the children it is the only substantial meal of the day. The teachers are trained to diagnose malnutrition and developmental delays in children ages 0 to 6. In home visits, they teach the parents ways of addressing the situation.

Parent involvement is key to the success of the preschool program. Through free parenting classes, mothers and fathers learn about the benefits of education for their children’s future. Other topics include child-rearing techniques, the rights of the child, family violence and gender roles.

For $100 a month, you can sponsor a rural preschool by paying the salary of a teacher who will touch the lives of hundreds of people and make a lasting contribution to an entire community. The program taps the potential of young children during a critical period of their development. In addition, the teachers are trained to diagnose and treat developmental deficiencies before they take a permanent toll.

The preschool program broadens the horizons of these children and their families. Instead of dropping out of school and following their parents into farming and housework, they pursue dreams of careers and a future they never would have imagined.

For $50 a month, you can sponsor one half of a preschool teacher’s salary. For $25 a month, one quarter.