Anat Kah (meaning "village support" in Maya) is an emerging community foundation whose mission is to enhance the quality of life for residents of the Riviera Maya by supporting the development of a sustainable civil society, or non-profit sector, that promotes community participation and social investment. This will be accomplished through ongoing evaluation and assessment of community needs and opportunities, the strategic investment of resources to existing nonprofit programs and community projects, technical support for the development of new programs and projects, and the facilitation of community partnerships that help bridge gaps between service and community needs. Anat Kah A.C. will focus its initial efforts in the community of Puerto Aventuras.
These are just a few of the initiatives currently supported by Anat Kah:
Programa Día - in early 2012 Anat Kah hosted and coordinated a teacher training program, Programa Día, for 17 elementary school teachers from the Puerto Maya primary school. The program, which has had much success in bringing art education to hundreds of schools around Mexico, exposes the teachers to the Programa Día philosophy which incorporates art and creativity into the classroom at least once a week, with a structured program featuring Mexican art and artists, in particular. Each teacher who participated received a copy of the curriculum to use in their classroom, and they hope to follow up the course with another workshop next year.
After-School Programs - In 2012, after school activity scholarships were provided by Anat Kah to 10 children with qualifying grades (90% or higher average) so that they could participate on the local youth soccer team or in after school dance classes. The scholarship program provides a portion of the monthly payment, paid directly to the teacher, and expects the families to pay the other part, encouraging parental commitment to their child's activities. We would like to expand this program for 2013 to allow greater participation (grades permitting!), as there are many children who are interested in participating.
Bolsas Kah - "Community Bags" is a community collaboration between Anat Kah and a group of talented seamstresses in the Poblado. Using donated denim jeans, shorts and skirts, the women have stitched stylish handbags, wallets, makeup cases, passport covers, and other goods to be sold in and around Puerto Aventuras. All proceeds from the sale of Bolsas Kah products support Anat Kah and our programs and grant-making activities.
Colegio del Mar - Colegio del Mar is a new, privately-funded educational center in the Poblado of Puerto Aventuras, and in late 2012 Anat Kah provided its first grant to them, in the form of three scholarships for financially eligible children to attend preschool. The school was founded with working families of the Poblado in mind, offering childcare from 6:30 am to 6:30 pm each weekday and preschool from 7:45 am to 2:00 pm. A nutritious breakfast and lunch are served to all children, and art and sports activities are offered daily. The school is located on the main road heading in to the Poblado, and they welcome guests who are interested in learning more to stop by!
Puerto Aventuras Sailing Club - Anat Kah supports the Puerto Aventuras Sailing Club on a monthly basis with a grant that benefits the program's scholarship fund for low-income students with good grades who would like to participate in sailing. The sailing club has shown outstanding results over the past two years, particularly by scholarship students, and this October participated in the North American Sailing Championships in Valle de Bravo, Mexico. Participation in this club has fostered leadership, teamwork and self-esteem among many young people from the Poblado of Puerto Aventuras, and has given them access opportunities to meet people and see places that they might not have otherwise been able to experience.
¡Hermanitos! - ¡Hermanitos! is a mentorship program that matches high school-aged students in Puerto Aventuras with elementary school-aged youth from the Poblado. The school day is very short, and most parents work, leaving children on their own for up to 8 hours a day. Because of that, Anat Kah has made a concerted effort to support extracurricular programs that provide opportunities for children to learn and excel in a new activity, and be in a safe environment for at least a few of those hours each day. The students meet weekly in the Puerto Aventuras daycare center or the middle school to work on homework together, play games, do activities and practice English. Hermanitos runs entirely on donations from Anat Kah as well as from support from Colegio Puerto Aventuras, which coordinates the Hermanitos Holiday Party and gift collection for the children and their families each year.
Friends of Puerto Aventuras - Recently, Friends of Puerto Aventuras and Puerto Aventuras Educators merged into one organization, consolidating the English classes for adults and children in the Poblado into one organization. We will soon begin providing funds to pay the salary of their adult English teacher who gives classes to approximately 30 local adults each week. Anat Kah hopes to extend support to FOPA over the next few months, as the classes that they provide to the adults and children of Puerto Aventuras, as well as the scholarship support that they give to eligible young people to attend university, are invaluable to the local community.
A High School for Puerto Aventuras - Approximately 150 students are enrolled in the local middle school, and forty students will graduate this July. This and future graduating classes need and deserve a local high school that can accommodate all students who want to continue their education past the ninth grade. A high school program serving 50 students operates in a small community center, where there is space to accommodate just two grades; there are three grades in Mexican high school. Community members from both sides of the highway have come together to address the population's most urgent need: the construction of one classroom, two bathrooms and a small office that will accommodate the third high school class. Community leaders, local businesses and Anat Kah have joined forces to launch "Building for the Future," a $35,000 usd fundraising campaign to construct this first phase of a complete community high school in the Poblado of Puerto Aventuras.
Casa del Arte - Casa del Arte is a program which gives art classes to youth and women in the Poblado several days a week, providing them with creative skills that can be translated into economic benefits as they hope to form connections with local merchants who can sell their stained glass, wood and other art projects to locals and tourists alike. Due to difficulties securing a new space to work this fall, the classes will restart in January, and the teacher hopes to engage up to 20 students.
How can YOU help?
Whether your gift goes towards after-school programs and summer activities for children, leadership training for youth, English classes for children and adults, community health initiatives, income opportunities for women or creativity training for teachers, every peso will count and keep Anat Kah moving forward, further and further, each year.
Local contributors with peso accounts can easily deposit/transfer funds into the Anat Kah AC Mexican bank account using the following information:
Bank: Scotiabank Inverlat
Name: Anat Kah, A.C.
U.S. donors can make tax-deductible donations to Anat Kah A.C. through the Friends of the Riviera Maya Fund at the International Community Foundation. The International Community Foundation is a U.S.-based nonprofit organization that works to facilitate and promote cross-border philanthropy between the United States and Mexico and around the world. If you would like your contribution to be earmarked for a particular Anat Kah program or service, please send an email to christina[at]fcrivieramaya.org with your name and donation amount so that we know to attribute your gift to the project of your choice.
Donate Medical Supplies:
Needed immediately are test strips for the One Touch Ultra 2 Glucometer and for Precision Xtra Glucometer. Approximately 100 strips are needed WEEKLY for diabetic patients in Tulum, Puerto Aventuras, Akumal and Chemuyil! As the program grows and expands, so too will the need for supplies. Please contact Claudia Muñoz for more details and to arrange a place to leave the supplies akumalsur[at]msn.com.
For youth and adult sports programs in the poblado of Puerto Aventuras:
- Baseball and softball gloves (adult and children's sizes)
- Baseball, softball and soccer shoes (adult and children's sizes)
- Baseball bats
Gloves, shoes and bats can be brought to Captain Rick's Sport Fishing in the Marina of Puerto Aventuras
For Bolsas Kah :
- Beads, beads and more beads! (glass, wood, plastic, etc.)
- Used clothing items
- Fabric remnants
For ¡Hermanitos! :
- Fabric remnants
- Wallpaper remnants
- Old children's magazines
- Popsicle sticks
- Any and all craft and art supplies - They will find a way to create art with anything that comes along!
For more information, contact Christina Alexander.
Anat Kah A.C.