During mid-2008, Anat Kah met with officials at the local public middle school, the "telesecundaria", to inquire about needs at the school to see how we could best work with them. While it is a public school, most school improvements and extracurricular activities must be paid for by parent contributions or individual donations.
The principal told us that the school desperately needed a barrier wall to replace the existing, worn down, metal chain-link fence that surrounded the school. She explained that the noise from the increasingly busy street combined with the insecurity of the current fence have been a problem and created disruptions for teachers and students alike. So we committed to help the school get their wall built. The primary school and pre-school in the Poblado are both surrounded by walls, and the construction of those walls was also coordinated and funded in large part by residents and visitors to Puerto Aventuras.
Construction began in fall of 2008, with the first side of the wall built with support from Anat Kah, Sandia Preparatory School (New Mexico) students and the captains and mates from Captain Rick’s Sport Fishing, along with the Dave Harris Memorial Cinco de Mayo Fishing Tournament.
Additionally, when students from Sandia Prep came to Puerto in early November for their annual cultural exchangecommunity service trip, we organized a muraling activity, bringing the young people from New Mexico together with their counterparts at the middle school in the Poblado for several days of painting and cultural exchange. Though the rain put a damper on one day of painting, they were still able to put up the first section of a mural based around the theme of “Hands Around Puerto Aventuras”, a painting that we plan on adding on to with help from different community members and groups.
We were able to raise a large portion of the funds to complete the telesecundaria wall construction over the holidays during our December fundraising campaign. Additionally, Agregados y Bloques del Carmen, S.A. de C.V. donated half of the remaining blocks needed to complete the project.
Over the summer, a second mural painting event was held and more than 20 students and their parents came to add their figures to the wall.
The front of the wall is the final phase to be completed. The school is working with local architecture students to create a design, and Anat Kah plans to sponsor the construction once an appropriate design is chosen.
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