A Day of Welcome for "El Caminito," March 29, 2009


First, thanks for reading about our activities. It’s a pleasure for me, as a participant in the scholarship program, to keep you informed about what we’re doing as a Program.

As one of our traditions as a program, each weekend we participate in different activities together, and this weekend, March 29, was a very important and historic day for us as we work on building and developing the scholarship program. We celebrate a mass and had a lunch for all the new high school students who will become part of the university prep program, “El Caminito,” which will begin soon and last until the end of this year.

The goal of the day was to show the students what “El Caminito” (“The Little Journey”) and Nuestro Ahora are all about. The day allowed the new students a chance to meet and interact with the current scholarship students as well as to learn about what “El Caminito” consists of. . .the program requirements and expectations. (Note: The high school students, many still living in the orphanages, travel to the capital each Friday to spend the weekend at our scholarship house where they take prep course in language and math at the UCA and participate in community service and leadership and development workshops, meeting other youth from distinct orphanages throughout El Salvador, sharing experiences and encouragement.) The new students each came with their representatives, some brought family members and others arrived with the directors of the different orphanages where they live. In all 13 young men and women came, all who hope to obtain scholarships to continue their studies at the university level next year. The members of the Local Committee and the program volunteers in El Salvador got a chance to know the new students.
Everyone who attended the Welcome Day seemed very happy and content to have the opportunity to be part of the activity, especially the new students excited to begin preparations for university study. It is a special challenge for the program as there are so many deserving students, yet due to the difficult current economic situation, only some of the students will receive the much-needed scholarships. Nonetheless, the students remain optimistic, thinking about the coming year.
Sunday was a very rewarding and dynamic day. We had the chance to meet the new students, as we played icebreakers, shared mass together (the students offering petitions and participating in the offertory procession), and enjoying lunch. It was a memorable time for our program.


Some more photos from the day. . . Fr. Mark celebrated a special Mass at our scholarship house to start off the new year of studies

Maricela reads during the Mass

Flor, one of the new students, participates in the offering of gifts at Mass

We all enjoyed lunch after Mass. . .37 students & mentors at one very long table :) in our scholarship house. . .It's exciting to think of the coming year and having more students & good times as a Program. Getting to know one another: the scholarship students invite the new students to icebreakers in the park near the scholarship house

Magda leads the human knot!