The Chance Project

By Maria Soledad, Project Founder & Director

photo - Maria (R) first student (L)

While working in a Home for girls, I observed that cases are commonly divided in three groups: First, girls who had no family; second, girls who were not safe in their homes because of violence or abuse; third, girls who were taken away from their families because they could not provide food or a safe place to live.  Many of these girls could go back home if parents follow judge instructions, get a better job and improve their living conditions. This Project is focused on parents of girls of the third group, who need to get ready to get their girls back in their house. 

WHY is the Chance Project Important? Most of these parents were abandoned or abused kids, with no education opportunity, people with no opportunity to learn job skills. Most of the mothers are single, so they leave their kids alone or under not responsible adult supervision.

WHAT is the Chance Project? We contact parents through Home Social Workers to see if they meet the requirements and have shown interest and determination to get their kids back. After being referred, their situation will be evaluated (job skills, experience, education, interests and abilities).

HOW does the Chance Project Work?  A parent will bring information of three places to study. Chance personnel will visit the suggested places and evaluate them to choose one.  The parent will receive a scholarship. Their work, attendance and responsibility will be supervised. Parents will not receive the money it will be paid by us directly to the schools. They will be responsible for their own transportation expenses. They also will attend a monthly meeting in the project's office to learn about administration, nutrition, health, emotional support and encouragement. We'll also share the Good News of Jesus in these meetings.

WHO can help? Everyone, even though, it is important to get Guatemalan community involved in the raising money. Sponsors will be informed periodically.

I am working with the first student of The Chance Project already; she is a 29-year-old mother of five girls.  The father of the girls left and she is faced with the responsibility by herself. She works in a tools store.  If she sells, she earns money, otherwise she won't.  She went to the judge and asked for help.  The girls were sent to a home for girls. Her father abandoned this mother at the age of nine.  So she only got to the third grade. At that age she started selling candies in the street, cleaning a restaurant and the tools store.  None of these jobs could give her the money to feed 5 girls.                 

She came to my office one day and said… “I wish I could study”… so she became the first person in The Chance Project. She came back three days later with three booklets of beauty schools she could go to.  We decided together that she should go to the one that is authorized by the Ministry of Education. She is already earning money with the new career. Her girls are back home; she will be graduating this November. Her name is Zuly Elizabeth Zamora Contrera.  

Students for 2017...

Katy, Berta and Maria Luisa are studying sewing; Lidia and Maria Ana are studying cooking; Jacinta and Dorita are in beautician school and Elsi is studying English as a second language.

Back to Main Page