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We are often asked what happens to the girls after they graduate from primary school and leave the Tewecado. Most of the Tarahumara boarding students go on to "secundaria", which is the equivalent to junior high in the US, and others continue on to finish high school and attend college. In recent years, several have enrolled at the University of Chihuahua and are studying fields as diverse as computer science, nursing, environmental studies, health sciences and physical therapy.
The schools run by the Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Poor offer education through high school, but do not cover expenses for incidentals. And, of course, those students wishing to go on to college must find the means to finance their studies. Long-time Tewecado volunteer, Ramon Ordoñez, aka "Don Ramon", has taken a number of the girls under his wing so they may continue their education, either helping them personally or identifying scholarships. Today he supports 23 students (from throughout the Sierra Madre Mountains), ten of whom are from Cerocahui. Meet some of these girls:
Adelina Mora is in her fourth semester at the University of Chihuahua (UACH), studying environmental engineering. Daneira Hernández is also at UACH in her first semester of nursing. Santa Lucía Urias is in her third semester studying languages at LaSalle University, a private Catholic university in Chihuahua. Cecica Hernández and Emilia Delgado have completed their undergraduate work in nutrition and physical therapy, respectively, and are now working to save money to obtain their diplomas. (In Mexico, graduates must pay a 10,000 peso fee to the government to get their official record of graduation.) Alondra Domínguez is in her fourth semester at UACH, working toward a degree in chemical engineering. Benita Urias, Yesenia Cleto and María Osorio are in their first semester of high school in Creel. Aylin López is at the Sisters' boarding school in Sisoguichi, finishing up her last year of junior high.
Note: If any of our donors would like to assist Don Ramon in supporting these students, we would be happy to ensure that he gets your gifts. The greatest need right now is for the 20,000 peso diploma fees (total) for Cecica and Emilia, which is about US$1100.
Madre Bego was as good as her word: she would finish the kitchen remodel before the end of the school year. Today the girls are cooking in a beautiful, expanded facility that better meets the needs of 100 hungry kids. Next up: a new shower facility located next to (and connected to) the girls' dormitory.
The project, estimated to run about US$50,000, will include the building and fixtures as well as remodeling of the space currently being used as bathing facilities. The Madre has sought a grant from the Society of Jesus in Mexico, a worldwide organization of Jesuits, which has pledged US$20,000 toward the project. The Tewecado Trust has agreed to take on the additional amount. Work is expected to begin in January. If you are interested in contributing to this effort, please indicate "Showers" on your check.
Madre Bego explains to Ann the approximate location of the new shower room she wants to have built. The new room will be connected to the dormitory on the right.
Peggy Hershberger by Gene Hershberger
Laurence Ettari by Mary K. Ettari
Bob Mitchell by Catherine Devanney
George A. Masek by Holly Stahl
Trisha Pedroia by Bob & Marty Birgen
Dorothy Thatch by Donna Murray, Doris Rubin, Diane England, Thomas Shaffer, Janet Linck, Larry Rosenow, Alice Miller, Nancy Wright, Jody Thatch Sarah Zerr & Robert Marolf
Christine Lee by ACCESS-VR & Mary Lee Maples
One of our jobs as board members is to ensure your donations are used appropriately. We try to minimize the "red tape" for the Sisters, but we do require proofs of purchase for all financial transfers sent to the schools. A recent accounting from Cerocahui highlights just where your money went over the past few months: medicines, food (primarily fresh produce and meat), teachers' salaries, gas and educational materials. Thank you!
From the Sisters - Madre Bego, Hermanas Gloria, Rosario, Dulce and Maria - and the children of the Tewecado Mission School...