“Education is the key mechanism to change lives, and build development. Nothing can do this better.”

– Mary Metcalfe

What do you remember about your school? The art on the walls? The playground? Your very own desk and hook to hang up your backpack full of notebooks and pencils?

For many students across the Caribbean and Latin America, their schools are unable to provide the features that we take for granted. Some students are hindered from attending school because of unsafe structures or far distances to travel.  However, FFPC donors and partners are working to change this – and today is the day!

Today is International Day of Education!  In 2018, the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed January 24 as the International Day of Education to celebrate learning and education’s integral role in lifting communities out of poverty.

With more than ten years of working with our incredible donors and partners, hundreds of students in Jamaica and Haiti now have the opportunity to learn in a safe, welcoming school, and in an environment conducive to learning. Together we have built a remarkable 32 early childhood education schools across Jamaica, provided 780 desks and chairs, distributed 275 computers and 450 soccer balls, and trained early childhood teachers to fill the schools. Building a safe structure for learning invites more students to attend school and eliminates some of the barriers to attendance.

 Mrs. Terry Bennett-Buchanan, a teacher at the newly constructed Hampden Primary’s Infant Department in Jamaica, has this to say:

 “I brag to other schools and prospective parents that Hampden Primary’s Infant Department now has spacious classrooms, a fully equipped play area, security fencing and security grills, which provides even more safety for children while they are at school.” 

Having a secure structure for students to learn is critical for parents and students. When students feel safe, they can focus on learning. Mrs. Bennett-Buchanan says:

“A lack of those features sometimes deterred parents from sending their children to Hampden in the past, especially the lack of a fence. We have highly trained staff that will certainly aid in the development of the children. I am just happy at the level of progress our little school has made.”

In 2020, we are gearing up to support more students, build more schools and increase the impact we make in the lives of current and future students! FFPC is excited to extend support to students in Honduras and the Bahamas this year.  We invite you to join in and help students reach their potential – starting with a new school!