Thursday, March 22, 2018

Hola Boca de Tomatlan!

Members of the Global Youth Leadership Network - GYLN (Kelvin Au, Janice Lee, Aileen Lai and Chris Cheng) and Isa Mundo Foundation Founder and Director (Paul Lorilla) arrived in Boca de Tomatlan today to aid the development of a learning centre in the village of Boca de Tomatlan.

We arrived early in the morning and received a warm "Bienvenido" from students, teachers and Cynthia Leigh, the Lead Coordinator of Boca de Tomatlan Community Education Program.  Cynthia outlined the operation of the school and showed us the classroom that will become the main space for her after school English lesson, literacy and computer program.

GYLN representatives spent the morning with students teaching them about their organization and stories of their lives in Vancouver and abroad.  They read books, participated in curriculum activities and led outdoor games with all the kids. The rest of the day was spent building shelves, assembling a storage system, setting up laptops and organizing books for a future library. The group also had time to visit the Secundario school and a hike to explore the rest of the Boca village and local life.

The first day ended with a stop to Old Vallarta area to see souvenir shops and local eateries to celebrate the day.

The next day will be another busy morning and an afternoon trip to Casa Connor to learn about Pasitos de Luz and spend time with the children and staff of this important facility serving children with disabilities in the area.

Saludos

GYLN and Isa Mundo!

Thursday, March 1, 2018

Mexico Project March 21-27, 2018

Isa Mundo Foundation will be joining a youth group in Mexico this month to officially launch a new partnership with the Boca de Tomatlan school. Mundoers visited the school for the first time in November 2017 and continued discussion on how to develop a partnership moving forward.


The group provided a blog as a formal note to Isa Mundo Foundation and its members.

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We would like to introduce the Sunwah Foundation Global Young Leaders Network (GYLN) - a non-profit organization that provides social services internationally, with on-going projects around the world to serve communities, support people in need and develop leadership skills in young leaders.

The organization was formed by a group of volunteers who are passionate in giving back to societies and develop a network to exchange cultural values and diversities. We establish chapters and recruit members globally to strengthen local connections and provide direct support to communities.

GYLN's objectives align well with Isa Mundo's approach in providing service to less fortunate communities around the world and supporting families in need, while collaborating with other not-for-profit organizations to create a larger impact globally. The experience of Isa Mundo in Mexico, where resources for schools are not enough relative to those local schools in Canada, provides us an insight of the importance in serving our neighboring countries as well. We believe that partnering with Isa Mundo will allow us to explore the vast opportunities of volunteering in areas related to schools in Mexico.

This will be our first project in Mexico and we are planning our visit during the week of March 21 - 27, 2018. The first stage of the week long project is to support the refurbishing of classrooms, bring school supplies and host teaching activities for students in Boca de Tomatlan School. We are also planning a visit to Casa Connor/Pasitos de Luz to understand the health and situation of children and the facility. This visit will provide an opportunity to assess potential long-term support in the future. It will be a great experience for our chapter to learn the local culture, establish connections, and explore any possibilities of future projects in the region and surrounding communities.

To learn more about our organization, please visit our website at www.sunwah-gyln.com

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Andrée Lacasse - Distinguished Alumni Award

We are pleased to announce that our Co-Founder and Chair, Children and Youth Projects, Andrée Lacasse, was recently awarded a Distinguished Alumni Award by the University of Victoria. Andrée's contributions in her career working on Indigenous issues and her volunteer work as a Board Member of the Ottawa Inuit Children's Centre were recognized by co-workers and Indigenous community members. 

Andrée has been instrumental in the success of the Isa Mundo Foundation and we congratulate her on this well deserved acknowledgment and honour.  We are proud to have her in the Isa Mundo family.

Well done, Andrée!

To learn more about her alumnus cohorts, please visit UVIC Distinguished Alumni Awards. 

Saturday, January 13, 2018

A Visitor to Pasitos de Luz / Casa Connor

We would like to share a blog written by one of Isa Mundo Foundation's project site visitors. We were able to arrange a visit to Casa Connor for Kiara Scott and family to visit the Pasitos de Luz centre.

As always, we are grateful for Teena and Peter Oudman for their dedication in coordinating visits for volunteers and travelers who are interested in seeing this important facility and space.  Thank you also to Kiara for sharing your story and experience with us.








Blog written by Kiara Scott.


On December 23rd, 2017, I had the honour to visit Casa Connor and the Pasitos de Luz centre , a facility that provides local children with disabilities with a safe, loving space. With the guidance of Teena Oudman, the cofounder of Pasitos de Luz, I was personally toured around the site. We met at the local grocery store in Puerto Vallarta and her friend drove us about a half hour out of town into an developing suburban region where Casa Connor is located. 

During the scenic drive, she told me about the history of Pasitos, how far it has come, and her visions for the future. She showed me photos of the land that Casa Connor was built on, demonstrating how it started from nothing but has grown with hope and dedication. Now, the building has taken on a beautiful, simple structure with high ceilings and cut-outs that bring life and sun light into the space. There are classrooms, a cafeteria, a kitchen, bathing rooms, physical therapy rooms, playrooms, and bedrooms. Teena spoke about the immense generosity that they have received from donors, offering up big bucks for staples like therapy baths and air conditioning. Despite these contributions, she emphasized that the organization is seeking more sustainability through monthly donations to pay the staff that keeps everything running day in and out. Seeing Casa Connor and learning about how far it has come, and seeing how much more there is to become from it, was a very humbling experience. I am inspired by the intense work and perseverance it has taken Teena and her team to build Casa Connor from the ground-up, yet, it is evident that there is an important role for each individual staff member, supporter, volunteer, and donor for the success and capacity of the organization. 

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Boca de Tomatlan - Education Project




Isa Mundo Foundation visited Boca de Tomatlan and a start up education project focusing on English literacy and introduction to use of technology (laptops) and education software and tools to improve education attainment.

The objective is to launch the education project in partnership with the elementary school in the village and eventually having local teachers lead and manage the program with resource support from school district and other non profit organizations working in the area.

Isa Mundo is committed to support the school and current project leader (Cynthia Leigh) to deliver this project to the community.  As Cynthia stated " ... the main goal is to afford the children the opportunity to dream of brighter futures and giving them the support they need to continue with their educational goals."

We look forward to working in partnership with Cynthia and her team on this new education project in Mexico.