AVP Guatemala’s facilitators started the year off strong, completing three workshops–a Basic Workshop at Proyecto Educativo La Esperanza, an Advanced Workshop at Colegio Amigos, and a Facilitator’s Workshop organized through the Village Health NGO—in January.
This busy month for AVP Guatemala is a result of Country Coordinator Lorena Escobar’s superb organizational and leadership skills as well as the strengthening of the current Facilitator’s Collective and relationships with schools and organizational partnerships.
“As AVP Guatemala Coordinator, I feel happy with the work that we have initiated in this year 2016. In each workshop, we have affirmed Transforming Power in the lives of each participant and as a facilitator team we are practicing and affirming our strengths,” remarks Escobar.
Two workshops, a Basic and Advanced, were completed simultaneously in Proyecto Educativo la Esperanza and Colegio Los Amigos, two programs that AVP Guatemala has invested time and resources in maintaining a relationship.
At Proyecto Educativo la Esperanza, a free middle school for at-risk youth in Chimaltenango, Guatemala, incoming students completed a basic workshop, a requirement for their entry in the school. Since 2013, Director Hilda Vasquez, an AVP Facilitator, has incorporated AVP workshops and activities in her curriculum. With formal funding from AVP Guatemala in 2015, she now dedicates an additional 2.5 hours a week to peacebuilding activities. Elizabeth Ajanel, one of the facilitators and alumna of La Esperanza, facilitated the workshops along with Vasquez and Luis Chamorro.
Teachers and administrators at the Colegio Los Amigos, a Quaker school in Ipala, Chiquimula, completed a three-day Advanced Workshop. This workshop marks an ongoing relationship with the school. “AVP is a useful tool in the hands of teachers, who work with the lives of boys, girls and teenagers,” stated Escobar, who facilitated the workshop with Samuel Alvarez and Magda Guaran. “I am sure that the workshop has planted fertile soil and the fruits of this effort will be seen reflected in the future, in the lives of each of the students.”
For Escobar, the fact that two workshops were carried out at the same time in different, and distant, regions shows the strength of the Facilitator’s Collective, a growing group of seven facilitators and eight apprentice facilitators that meets bi-annually for training and mentoring. “This affirms that the facilitator team is prepared to do work in an efficient and outstanding way,” remarks Escobar.
New facilitators, which will be added to the Collective, were trained in a workshop organized by Village Health, an NGO that works in several remote villages providing health and social needs. AVP has been introduced strategically through workshops offered to school teachers and community leaders. The participants of this workshop were professional and voluntary staff of the program.
This month of action marks the beginning of many workshops to come!