Ascential Language and Arts School (ALAS means 'wings' in Spanish) is closing out our FOURTH season on Nicaragua's amazing Isla Ometepe. Now with over 250 students invested in our programs, ALAS unique curriculum offers a creative and collaborative way for learners to immerse themselves inside the performing and visual arts while 'actively' learning the English language.
Ometepe is a rising, English-speaking tourist destination and although many areas in Nicaragua are still very poor, the communities on the island are thriving and intelligent, benefiting greatly from volunteer driven language classes. ALAS is the ONLY program of its kind in all of Nicaragua. During our 3 month tour in 2016 (October - December), we had the pleasure of bringing in Profesores Chris Meis-Martial Arts & Dance (Peru/Arvada, Colorado), Kelsey Kiernan-Dance & Early Childhood Director (Arvada, Colorado), Jenny Puig-Dance & Latin American Director (Dominican Republic/Miami, Florida), Alyssa Graves-Vamos Arte!/Visual Arts (Golden, Colorado) as well as ALAS Founder and Programming Director, Jen Archer-Dance & Music (Florida, Colorado, Ometepe) to teach over 200 FREE classes!
Ascential Language & Arts School has tripled in size since 2013 and we now serve four separate villages in the barrios of Merida, El Congo, Altagracia & San Ramon offering before and after-school arts immersion courses in Dance, Martial Arts, Music and Visual Art to local public schools, private clients and our our very own sites! Through our programming, students on Ometepe Island receive TUITION FREE academic/arts fusion classes featuring English, Spanish, Math, Science, History, Geography and Literature through the performing and visual arts.
We believe education is the key to developing strong, responsible and accountable communities. Based on the requests from our student body, our fundraiser's vision is to spark awareness and acquire funds in order to provide teachers, individualized classes, performances, venues and unique experiences for our participants. While on the island, and in lieu of cash, we exchange/barter services and are proud to accept donations of food, drinks, Wi-Fi minutes, transportation, animal care/feed, gasoline, labor and homemade meals, etc. as trade for our hard work. Our neighbors are always happy to help us.
With the assistance of our teachers and community members, we are excited to update that we have ALREADY broken ground on the promised, new 'Casas De Profesores'. (And by 'new' we mean recently developed dirt block or cob housing, embellished with recycled materials.) Your cash donations will be appropriated to cover the many costs and expenses for our ALAS program maintenance, instructors, supplies and building projects.
The most important space we occupy in Nicaragua is that of appreciation, partnership, respect and contribution to our local friends and the academic arts community we are helping to perpetuate. The Archer family are avid eco-builders, animal rights advocates, sustainable living supporters, seasonal residents, partners and donors to the area. It truly takes a village to be successful with ventures such as these. We are always accepting easily transportable school supplies, art supplies, athletic equipment, athletic clothing (dance, yoga, biking, shoes, etc.), camping gear, dry foods, spices, gift cards, cash and Bitcoin donations.
Let's break it down:
- $15 usd/450 cordobas covers ONE instructor's housing costs for one day.
- $20/600 cordobas covers 20 bus rides to and from Volcan Maderas to Concepcion.
- $50/1500 cordobas feeds one teacher for a week.
- $100 usd/3000 cordobas buys 10 bags of cement.
- $200 usd/6000 cordobas pays for a one way plane ticket from Miami to Managua.
- $500 usd/15,000 cordobas pays for two round trip tickets and 2 weeks of meals for a professor!
Please help where you can, friends! Visiting the island
is the #1 thing you can do to support this project! We can help you arrange ALL of your travel, accommodations and activities. :) Please also help us by donating and/or sharing our story.
*We do not distribute money to any one person directly. All funds are used to cover the costs and expenses of the programs, their sustenance and their planning.
Please visit our WEBSITE & FACEBOOK & NEWS pages for further information.