Highlights from March and April in Ecuador and the U.S.

In Ecuador:

The students were on vacation from school throughout much of March and April, but that doesn’t mean they took a break from learning. During this vacation period, our educators shared their knowledge through fun vacation clubs that challenged the students and gave them the chance to try new activities, crafts, and hobbies.

Pamela and Cecilia ran a jewelry-making club, where the students made beautiful bracelets and earrings out of thread. Jordy taught a Rubik’s Cube club where students figured out how to solve the classic brain-teasing puzzle. In Lili and Diego’s cooking class, students learned to make pasta salad and enrollado de atún (a traditional tuna dish)—and even made cake without using an oven!

CEA volunteer Lindsay taught an English club with lessons about parts of the body, clothing, fruits, colors, and more. Diego and Josue’s videography club gave students the opportunity to take and edit photos and videos. Mirka taught students how to cure wounds and offer first aid.

The vacation clubs were a big success and a delight for everyone involved!

April saw the end of vacation, our annual scholarship ceremony, and the start of a new school year. At the scholarship ceremony, new and returning scholars were honored and presented with new backpacks and uniforms!

Students not only began a new year at school, but also launched a new year at the Foundation. They created S.M.A.R.T. (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and timely) goals for themselves to work on all year to improve personal and academic skills. Our staff also created individualized student logs to help each student reach their goals. Fred, our education manager, designed a new and improved curriculum to serve the students better. With so much preparation by both students and staff, the school year is off to a strong start!

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In the United States:

Food and fun to benefit the stars? Yes, please! The 2019 An Evening for the Stars, Starfish’s annual benefit dinner, was a huge success on April 27th. Thank you to the 172 supporters who traveled from near and far to The Red Lion Hotel in Timonium, Maryland, for an evening to support Starfish and its programming. At the dinner, guests could view silent auction items in-person, purchase Ecuadorian crafts, pick a student to sponsor and get their fortunes read by a fortune teller.

For the first year ever, co-founders Beth and Jenn were at the event together, now that Jenn has moved back to the USA from Ecuador. It was also the first year for our inaugural VIP reception held before the event. During a delicious dinner featuring Ecuadorian-inspired cuisine, guests enjoyed being welcomed by Beth, hearing stories about our students from Jenn, and learning how to get more involved from board member Casey.

Our generous donors and sponsors helped Starfish raise $107,559! Thank you for helping the event be so successful, and we look forward to seeing you at An Evening for the Stars in 2020!

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Beth Awalt