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Projects Abroad launches literacy program at new placement in Belize

Local elementary school to benefit from successful literacy program

A one-on-one session between a teaching volunteer and a student on Projects Abroad’s literacy program in Belize.

A one-on-one session between a teaching volunteer and a student on Projects Abroad’s literacy program in Belize.

TORONTO – September 27, 2017 – A successful first year for Projects Abroad's literacy program in Belize has inspired the opening of a second project placement this month. Since September 2016, volunteers have been working with children from Holy Cross Anglican School on Projects Abroad's Teaching Project in Belize, and from this month onwards will also be able to work at New Horizons Elementary School.

In twelve months Projects Abroad's Teaching Project in Belize has benefitted 60 children between the ages of four and fifteen who struggle to read and write. Four students have managed to graduate entirely from the program, twelve have graduated to a higher level, 85% have mastered two or more sections in their level, and 98% of students have improved.

The creative mind behind the literacy program in Belize is Susan Barkhouse, a Canadian who has been living in Belize since 2013. "I volunteered to read with students at the local Belizean Primary School and the reading program wasn't meeting the needs of the students," she says. "I therefore created and developed a comprehensive literacy program to allow the students to increase their literacy skills."

The success of the program would not have been possible without the help of Projects Abroad volunteers. The course is designed for student progress to continue through interchangeable volunteer support. "The child bonds with the program, and not individual volunteers," says Barkhouse.

As the new placement is starting up this month, Projects Abroad is in need of passionate volunteers to instill the same energy into the literacy program with a new group of students. Those wanting to gain practical teaching experience and positively impact the lives of children abroad are encouraged to consider this project option in Belize to help spread literacy to those who need extra support to get the education they deserve.

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