miércoles, 20 de junio de 2007

Job Vuh, the community library for children in San Antonio Aguas Calientes, opened this Sunday, with the help of Caldo de Piedra. The day’s highlights included a visit by three clowns of the Grupo de Teatro Pastores organized by Carlos Gómez who are, when they take their costumes off, a school director and two students of education. Their great act, capturing the essence of the library, entertains and educates children at the same time. After their success on Sunday they are looking to set up an ongoing project to train clowns in San Antonio. Volunteers needed!

But perhaps most important of all, around fifty children visited the library to look at the books and livened up its walls with their coloring in of geometric drawings of houses, bikes and people. As many adults came too, bringing gifts of food and books. Members of COCODE put up a canopy and a banner. A small pig, called Ak, was roasted for the occasion and all the folk involved ate a hearty meal of suckling pig, beans, tayuyos (small tamales) and tortillas.

The library will now be open every afternoon from Tuesday to Saturday. The sessions will include nursery rhymes, story-telling, an art session and quiet reading time for all those who attend. We are looking for funds to provide music (cd-player and cds), materials (paper, crayons, paints, scissors etc), children’s furniture, fruit for the children as they leave the library… and of course more books. Volunteers to deliver sessions, clean the library, raise money by selling cookies/food, teach music or art are also needed!

Huge thanks to (in no partucular order):

Fred and the three clowns from Pastores for their energy and time.

Neri and his grandfather, Servilliano, who killed and prepared Ak.

Neri for organizing the banner.

COCODE for providing the canopy and putting up the sign.

Soraya, Marta and Lizayda for the balloons and tidying up.

Angélica Marín for cooking the pig and serving it.

Herbert and Percy for helping in the library.

Ana and Juan Callejas for their amazing donation on the day of cupcakes, juice, encyclopedias, novels, puzzles and games.

Rosita Passarelli de Steele for biscuits.

Fernando Villalta for helping to organize and set up.

Elwin Esmith Lopez, the mayor of San Antonio, for donating the room and supporting us on the day.

Teresa Quiñónes, Derek Steele, Carmen and Nick, Liz and Chris, Jo and Rafa for showing up and supporting us.

Job Vuh, la biblioteca comunitaria para niños en San Antonio Aguas Calientes, abrió este domingo, con el apoyo de Caldo de Piedra. Hubo una visita de los payasos del Grupo de Teatro Pastores, organizados por Carlos Gómez, quienes al quitarse los trajes son un director de una escuela y tres estudiantes de magisterio. Su excelente show entretuvo a los niños y les enseñó sobre la biblioteca a la vez. Después de su éxito este domingo estarán empezando un proyecto para entrenar a payasos en San Antonio. Se necesitan voluntarios!

Pero tal vez lo más importante de todo es que al rededor de cincuenta niños visitaron la biblioteca y animaron sus paredes con sus dibujos geométricos de casas, bicicletas y personas. Llegaron similar cantidad de adultos también, trayendo comida y libros. Los miembros de COCODE pusieron un toldo y una manta con el nombre de la biblioteca. Un pequeño lechón llamado Ak fue asado para la ocasión y todos los prsentes comieron un manjar de lechón, tayuyos (pequeños tamales) y tortillas.

La biblioteca estará abriendo todas las tardes de martes a sábado. Las sesiones incluirán canciones, cuenta cuentos, arte y pintura así como tiempo para lectura individual para todos los niños que antinedan. Estamos busando fondos para proveer música (cd player y discos), materiales como papel, crayones, pinturas, tijeras etc., muebles para niños, fruta para que coman antes de irse a casa... y por supuesto más libros. Voluntarios para dar sesiones, limpiar la biblioteca, y recaudar fondos vendiendo comida o galletas, dar clases de arte o música también se necesitan!

Muchas gracias a:

Fred y los tres payasos de Pastores por su energía y tiempo.

Neri y su abuelo, Servillano, por matar y preparar a Ak.

Neri por organizar la manta.

COCODE por el toldo y colgar la manta.

Soraya, Marta y Lizayda por los globos y limpieza

Angélica Marín por cocinar el lechón y servirlo.

Herbert y Percy por ayudar en la biblioteca.

Ana y Juan Callejas por su generosa donación de cubiletes, jugo, enciclopedias, rompecabezas y juegos.

Rosita Passarelli de Steele por las galletas.

Fernando Villalta por ayudar a organizar e instalar.

Elwin Esmith López, alcalde de San Antonio, por donar el cuarto y apoyarnos en el día.

Teresa Quiñónez, Derek Steele, Carmen y Nick, Liz y Chris, Jo y Rafa por llegar a apoyarnos.

domingo, 10 de junio de 2007

Library Opening, San Antonio A.C.

Caldo de Piedra’s (Stone Soup’s) first community library will open on June 17th the same day as the town celebrates its annual feria.

Job Vuh (in Cakquichel), Lluvia de Libros or Book Rain will open on the second floor of the town hall, just off the main plaza thanks to the generous gift of a room by the mayor, Elwin Esmith Lopez.
It will open with over a hundred brand new quality Spanish books for children and several hundred more second-hand and English books.

Clowns from Pastores will be helping to celebrate the library’s first day. And a small pig, called Ak, will be roasted for the occasion.

Everyone is welcome.

The library will then be open for a couple of hours each afternoon to all children of the villages of San Antonio, Santa Caterina and Santiago Zamorra.

We are looking for volunteers!

Many thanks are due to many people for making this amazing thing happen:

Angelica Marin for her unwavering faith and incredible skill in bring people together.

Elwin Esmith Lopez for the key to the room.

Rosita Passarelli de Steele for her generous gift of books, a carpet and pillows.

Pablo Butki and Cecilia Rosales of the Reicken Foundation for the English books.

John Bell and Flor Caniz of Transitions for bringing books free from the States.

Alba Edelmira Estrada in Chiche’s Reicken library for her session with parents and toddlers.

Amilcar Zea of Casa de Libro for his time, advice and help with paperwork.

Suzanne Steele for passing on her children’s books.

Elizabeth Grote for shelves and innumerable touches.

Teresa Quiñónes for her enthusiasm and a great tour of Ventana Abiertas in Dueñas.

Mónica and the staff at Ventana Abiertas for inspiring us.

Rigoberto and everybody at Probigua for the afternoon in Alotenango.

Cándido López and COCODE San Antonio for sharing their room and use of their Association.

Fernando Villalta for taking on the responsibility of president of the Job Vuh committee.

Herbert for being a great vice-president.

Soraya Marín for her secretarial skill and expertise.

All the vocales who attend the Job Vuh meetings.

domingo, 3 de junio de 2007

About Us

What Is Caldo de Piedra?

Caldo de Piedra is a charity that manages and stocks children's libraries. These libraries are operated by parents and the community in support of local public and private schools to help girls and boys discover that learning is part of their lives. We believe in education in its broadest sense, where books are at the heart of an array of creative and artistic projects that engage children in a love of learning.

In Guatemala there are over 15,000 public schools and 4.3 million children. However, most children attend school for only three years, and about half are in first grade (age six). Despite recent efforts to improve education, Guatemala devotes the fewest resources in Latin America towards this end (only 2.5% of GDP) while Costa Rica and Belize invest double in their children’s future. Recent studies have shown that secondary school numeracy and literacy are poor. Parents often do not participate in schoolwork and stay away from the schools. The future of the educational system in Guatemala hinges on the partnering between parents, the community and their local teachers. This is where Stone Soup provides a powerful bridge.

We are partners with La Casa del Libro, a highly acclaimed charity that stimulates reading. Building upon the success of the project, we are expanding to small towns and villages in Sacatepéquez, Guatemala.

Why Children’s Books?
  • Reading is the key medium for lifelong learning.
  • Reading develops children’s language ability, critical thinking and nurtures their imagination.
  • Reading gives children more confidence and enables them to express their opinions.
  • Children are more receptive than adults to learning – and have more leisure time than most adults.
  • Reading is a means to children understand their own culture, history and language.
Why a Children’s Library?
  • A library offers children a safe alternative to the street.
  • A facility designed for children is more welcoming than the more formal, silent atmosphere of an adult library.
  • A library provides a venue conducive to other learning projects, e.g. arts, music, drama, computer, film, story-telling, poetry readings.
  • A library provides a place where services can be offered to the community, e.g. visiting doctors, dentists, health workers, environmental advisors and teachers.
  • A borrowed book is a valuable tool for enriching family life and teaching children to be responsible for loaned items.

Our Vision

Our vision is that all children in Guatemala, regardless of sex, religion, race, or educational level, should have the opportunity to access books and other resources which are taken for granted in the developed world, in order to develop a love of learning.

Mission Statement

We aim to support the creation of community-operated children’s libraries that augment school education by improving literacy and providing a wealth of creative projects . We want to involve parents and the community in their children’s learning process and to make this sustainable through training local librarians.

How We Operate
  • We meet members of communities that are interested in hosting a library.
  • We obtain a commitment from the community to obtain a centrally located building or a plot of land on which to build the library, and to hire a local librarian.
  • A steering committee is formed by members of the community.
  • Caldo de Piedra supplies books, seed funding, computers, and additional facilities e.g. educational materials, playground.
  • In conjunction with the community we create a quality environment for children.
  • Librarian and other members of the community receive training on educational techniques through our partners.
  • We work with the community to replace and augment the library’s books and other materials.

Sources of Funding
  • Private national and international donations for facilities.
  • Book donations or funding.
  • Hiring out function room for films, art installations, meetings, playgroups, adult education classes, internet access, printing facilities.
  • Tiered sponsor membership.
  • Community funding of the librarian.
Who We Are

Kyle Passarelli kyle.passarelli@gmail.com

Kyle was born in Guatemala and trained as an engineer at the University of Colorado. He has rendered illustrations for textbooks and worked as a project manager at an electronics company in Edinburgh, Scotland. He obtained a masters degree from Heriot Watt University in 2007 and has contributed work to an academic journal.

Cassandra Passarelli cassarelli@gmail.com

Born in London, Cassandra ran a successful bakery for ten years. She spent two years managing a charity working with inner-city children at risk and three as a magazine sub-editor. She did her degree in literature at the University of London, a post-graduate in Journalism at LCP and a masters in creative writing at the University of Edinburgh. Her short stories have won literary prizes in the UK.