- Team Impact
CI sponsors have been changing lives in Cartagena, Colombia, for nearly 30 years. In that time, we’ve gone from assisting 1,000 kids in the area to helping more than 43,000 children. We’re currently serving around 9,000 kids in two neighboring centers in the community of Barrio Olaya. Originally established inside residential homes, the interiors of both centers have outgrown their useful lives.
By helping us renovate the two centers into a separate community center and youth resource center, we can provide more children and teens with a safe, encouraging and age-appropriate environment.
A great deal of progress has been made on the renovation of two centers into a separate community center (shown here) and youth resource center.
CI staff make regular visits to the site to monitor the progress of the renovations.
The community center will serve as a refuge from poverty, where kids can play and learn in a safe environment.
The youth resource center will give teens a secure space to participate in youth programs and spend time with other success-oriented teens and adult mentors.
Work continues at a steady pace in anticipation of the June celebration.
CI’s director in Colombia, Hermalinda Guarín, reviews building plans with the contractor.She can’t wait to see the centers open their doors.
Demolition crews are busy removing walls and flooring from the second floor of what will be the new community center.
The community center will be reconfigured to provide ample room to efficiently carry out our specialized programs for kids.
Nearby, workers are completing similar tasks on the youth resource center. This will be a dedicated place for teens to participate in programs and socialize.
Crews measure and prepare for the eventual installation of new walls in the youth resource center.
In both centers, doors and windows have been carefully removed, stored, and will be reinstalled as renovations near completion.
The current buildings were originally two-story houses modified for our needs. As our sponsored population has grown, our facilities have not grown with them. Limited space results in congested activities and makes it difficult for staff to effectively implement our programs.
Because these two centers are located near each other, we’ve chosen to renovate them so each facility is uniquely suited to provide age-appropriate programming to a specific group:
Your support of these renovations will provide modern, safe spaces where children can grow and learn and teens can receive the life and job skills they need to succeed as adults.
“Coming to the community center has helped me learn and be a better person. And, at the community center, I have learned to be disciplined, to strive for what I want the most. This has made my mom feel proud of me, and I’m even more motivated to finish school so I can become a professional.” — Ana María (12)
CI’s community centers are the heartbeat of our organization. They provide safe, uplifting and caring environments from which CI kids can launch successful futures. But these centers are a big commitment — one that requires a lot of support.
So, to honor the big-hearted donors who so generously are able to help, we want to formally recognize you!
Our first foot forward in welcoming families to our life-changing facility.
A vital part of providing health services, including oral health procedures that wouldn’t otherwise be available to most of our kids.
Providing necessary medications when kids are sick is a critical part of keeping them healthy.
Creating healthy bodies is a key pillar of our work — and this clinic ensures kids have access to medical services.
A fun, interactive space for younger kids to play, read and connect with friends.
A space where parents and community members can participate in training activities and other events organized by center staff.
A place for younger kids to learn computer skills and do their homework.
A designated space for children to receive extra educational support in a fun environment.
A large space to bring the community together, engaging citizens and building relationships.
A resource for our teens where they learn vital digital skills to complete schoolwork and conduct job searches.
A flexible space for larger group training to support teen programs, from life skills to practical job skills.
A dedicated space for sports where teens can have fun while learning important lessons about teamwork and conflict resolution.
A space to nurture teens’ creativity and appreciation for the arts.
A comfortable space with age-appropriate reading materials and resources to help teens complete school assignments.
A flexible outdoor space for teens to hang out or hold meetings.
A designated space for teens who are struggling with schoolwork and need to meet with tutors