Where We Work
Help Educate has selection committees in four communities in Nicaragua: El Jicaral in the department of Leon, Rivas in the department of Rivas, and El Jicaro and Ococona in Nueva Segovia. Each of these communities were once or are currently home to Peace Corps Volunteers who now work with Help Educate.
We currently sponsor student tuition in top private Nicaraguan universities:
Universidad Martin Lutero http://www.uml.edu.ni/
La Universidad Cristiana Autónoma de Nicaragua http://www.ucan.edu.ni/
Universidad Católica Agropecuaria del Trópico Seco http://www.ucatse.edu.ni
Universidad Politécnica de Nicaragua http://www.upoli.edu.ni/
Universidad Nacional Autónoma de Nicaragua, Escuela de Enfermería http://www.unan.edu.ni/
Nicaragua is considered the second poorest country in the Western Hemisphere, with the average citizen’s income under $1,000 per year. The cost of tuition at most Nicaraguan universities is between $400 — $500 per year. While this may seem insignificant compared to the cost of tertiary education in the United States, it is prohibitive for the majority of graduating high school students.
Nicaragua is a country that is on the cusp of major economic breakthroughs in tourism and specialty-goods markets. These industries not only require individuals trained in the skills that make businesses run but also in the skills necessary for major infrastructure development, social development, and improved agricultural techniques. Additionally, the country needs an infusion of qualified teachers at the elementary and high school levels. Based on these needs, Help Educate sponsors highly qualified students with economic hardships to study towards bachelors degrees such as engineering, business administration, agriculture, health services, and education.
The Nicaraguan government and a host of international nonprofits have made great progress in raising the level of literacy across the country and increasing access to early childhood, primary, and secondary education, reaching rural communities that had previously been isolated from educational opportunities. A generation of students are graduating from high schools in rural communities where many parents only reached third grade. These young people have new ideas for the future of their communities and their country, eager to explore careers that will lead them beyond their legacy of sustenance farming. They dream of a higher education, something just out of reach for too many young people. Help Educate sponsors out the best of these students.
Nicaragua Country Statistics
Percent below poverty line: 48%
GDP - per capita: $1,126
0-14 years: 31.7%
15-64 years: 63.8%
65 years and over: 4.5%
Infant mortality rate: 21.86 deaths/1,000 live births
Literacy rate (age 15 and over): 67.5%
Comparative area: slightly smaller than New York state
Taken from the CIA World Factbook, February 2012.