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Program report: Secondary school is critical


Secondary school is critical. By Mary McVeigh - Program Director

Rosa, 2014 scholarship recipient

Secondary school is critical, don't you agree? Research shows that expected lifetime earnings for a girl in the developing world increase by about 10-15% for every additional year of secondary school. Still, for girls in Granada, there are significant barriers to secondary school enrollment, let alone completion. Let's break it down for a second:

  • While primary school enrollment for Nicaraguan girls is 85%, secondary school enrollment is just 45%.

  • The attendance rate for Nicaraguan girls in primary school is 83.6%, yet in secondary school it drops to 57.9%, meaning girls miss more than 2 days per week of school on average each week.

  • The school life expectancy for a Nicaraguan girl is 10.2 years.

  • Nearly half of Nicaraguan girls are pregnant by age 20, with over a quarter of births to girls age 14-18 (this rate is much lower for girls who stay in school!)

It's uphill at every turn. Some of the most significant barriers are:

  • Cost of uniforms and school supplies, even at public schools

  • Lost potential income for family

  • Responsibilities in the home so that parents can work (care for siblings, cleaning, watching the house)

  • Lack of incentive for long-term visioning and planning

  • Unplanned pregnancy

  • Health issues causing high absence rate

  • Lack of academic support once behind

The list is daunting- but our girls are brave. With that in mind, drumroll....

We are ecstatic to announce the launch of the Fútbol Sin Fronteras Granada Programa Educativo (SWB Granada Education Program). The program was established in 2014 to provide educational and financial support to girls in FSF who have dedicated themselves to learning, to their team, and to their futures. It was created by an SWB family in memory of a young man who exhibited all of the characteristics of a well-rounded student-athlete: humility, dedication to school and team, integrity, hard work, care for self and others.

The program has two tiers:

  • Tier 1 (accessible to all participants): Material support for school uniforms (public and private) and educational supplies earned through participation in SWB activities. Daily homework hours with access to computers, art supplies, internet, and tutors.

  • Tier 2 (accessible to selected participants): Secondary school scholarships for matriculation fees, full uniform and educational supplies. Mandatory tutoring and advising hours and quarterly progress reports.

We are humbled to expand our impact to include direct financial, educational support, and excited to be working alongside with our girls' schools to help them get to the finish line. Without six years of trust and program-building, we would not be able to implement such a nuanced and extensive effort. Thank you to everyone who has supported us along the way, and for your continued interest in the impact you've made. Get to know all 14 of our scholarship recipients and learn more about the program here!

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