The Mariposa DR Foundation offers all girls in the program many opportunities throughout the year to receive additional academic support either individually or in small groups. We focus on building competency in the core subjects of reading, writing and math. Many of the girls paired with individual tutors are seriously behind in school, out of school or are struggling with a learning disability. We also offer extra assistance to girls in 8th grade who are studying to pass national exams for entrance into high school.
There is no daytime high school program available within the town of Cabarete. Once girls graduate 8th grade the options are to attend night school two days per week in Cabarete or travel to a neighboring town to attend a daytime program. All of the Mariposa girls who graduate 8th grade receive scholarships to attend Colegio Cadin, a private high school run by Dominican female community leader, Flavia Vidal, in Islabon. We currently sponsor 22 girls at Colegio Cadin, and each year the number of high-school aged girls we have in programs is growing.
We also sponsor more than 40 girls in Colegio Coral, a private school from preschool to high school that provides a much higher standard of education than local public schools. We hope to get 100% of our girls in private schools soon, while continuing to support the local public school and help them to improve the education available to all the children of Cabarete. We provide safe transportation to and from school for all of our girls on scholarship.
For many children living in poverty, a family’s inability to afford a school uniform often stands in the way of them receiving an education. Unfortunately in most families, the girls’ education is often deprioritized as boys are sent first and girls assume more domestic responsibilities as they get older. Our goal is to ensure that all Mariposa girls are able to stay in school by providing them with school uniforms at the end of the summer program. The cost for a school uniform is fairly minimal but for poor families with many children this is a huge expense. Purchasing school uniforms for girls and in some cases siblings of their families enables them to stay in school and relieves a huge burden for the families.