The Dudley T. Dougherty Foundation

Tuition Assistance for San Vicente de Paul Bethania School

Grant Information
Categories Education
Location South Texas
Cycle Year 2019
Organization Information
Organization Name (provided by applicant) Dominican Sisters of Houston, Texas
Organization Name (provided by automatic EIN validation)
Contact Information
Contact Name Laura Henderson
Phone 713-440-3707
6501 Almeda Road
Additional Information
Used for Grant money will be used for tuition assistance to help pay the cost of educating very impoverished children at our mission school, San Vicente de Paul Bethania, which is located in one of the poorest and most violent neighborhoods in Guatemala City, Guatemala. Our school strives to ensure that our students receive a good education and graduate; however, our school families cannot pay the cost of educating their children. Without tuition assistance, our students would not be able to attend our school and have the opportunity end the cycle of poverty for themselves and their families.
Benefits San Vicente gives children a real chance to better their lives and those of their families, to end living in poverty, and to positively impact their community as adults. Our graduates consistently continue their education in high schools throughout Guatemala City to learn a skill or to earn a certification, and twenty-five percent of our students attend university. Alumni return to serve the Bethania community and our school as teachers, counselors, lawyers, and doctors.
Proposal Description The Dominican Sisters of Houston respectfully request a grant from the Foundation to benefit some of the poorest children in Guatemala City who attend our mission school, San Vicente de Paul Bethania.

Background: We have sponsored and administered San Vicente de Paul Bethania for over thirty years, and our Sr. Miriam Oliveros, OP has been head of school since that time. San Vicente serves approximately 540 children from pre-kindergarten three through the sixth grade. The school is in one of the poorest neighborhoods in Guatemala City. The neighborhood is plagued with drugs and violence, but against tremendous odds, the children at our school continue to succeed.

Goals & Means to Achievement: The goals of our mission school are to provide a good Catholic education to our students and to ensure that these high-risk children graduate. To achieve these goals, our students learn that education is their opportunity to end living in poverty, and they are empowered daily to change their own lives. The children are also taught values to prepare them for future leadership, particularly those of love, peace, and justice.

As importantly to achieve these goals, the school reaches out to the children's families to help them understand the importance of supporting their children's education and encouraging them to graduate. The school engages school families through family activities, frequent parent-teacher conferences, and counseling. The school provides tuition assistance and full scholarships for most students; provides the poorest families with food, clothing, and medical assistance; and serves breakfast to any child who needs one. By collaborating with school families, our school is able to achieve its goals.

Measured Achievement: San Vicente’s success is measurable. Consistently, ninety-eight percent or more of our students graduate the sixth grade. In 2019, all our students graduated as compared to the thirty percent who graduate from public schools in the same neighborhood of Guatemala City. Ninety-eight percent or more of our graduates attend high school where they learn a skill or earn a certification such as teaching; and twenty-five percent attend university. Many graduates return to serve the school and their community and express their gratitude for the school that changed their lives. Currently, five alumni serve as teachers who have returned to the school community to make a difference. Throughout the years, alumni have returned to serve the community and the school.

Funding: The actual cost of educating a child at San Vicente is approximately $300 per year; however, no family can afford this amount. The stated tuition at the school is $100 per year or $10 per month. About one third of students at the school can pay the $10 monthly tuition, but the remaining students are either on full scholarship or tuition assistance and pay what they can. We, the Dominican Sisters of Houston, provide the remaining revenue for the school's budget, which is approximately $175,000 annually. We raise money through individual donations, grants, mission appeals in local churches, major gifts, and fundraising events. A grant of $7500 from the Foundation will do real and tangible good for these deserving children in need.