Play Area with Recycled Materials
Thiales de Guatuso is a rural, agricultural community in Costa Rica of about 100 families. Community youth attend Thiales Elementary until they complete sixth grade, and then they commute to a high school in an adjacent larger town. Currently, there are 52 students attending Thiales Elementary, at seven grade levels. The school has very limited financial and physical resources, play space for children is underdeveloped and often underutilized due to the tropical heat or seasonal rainfall, and girls and younger students in particular seldom utilize these play areas. The local Parents Board of Education has identified a couple of priorities for its community, one of which is to provide a safe for all ages, gender-equal, eco-friendly play space for the students at Thiales Elementary, which will be accomplished by utilizing old car and truck tires to build tunnels and other play spaces and by placing two cement garden tables under the shade of recently donated trees. With support from World Connect, they can accomplish this goal quickly.
With the help of the students and their parents, the playground has been built and painted. The school held an inauguration event, which was attended by all the students and seven community members. Since the completion of the project, community members have donated additional tires and paint to designate seating areas for parents while they wait for their children. The Parents Board of Education have advanced their project design and management skills and have been approved for additional funds from the Municipality.
"Young girls who used to stand around during recess hours can now be found bouncing from tire to tire or drawing in their notebooks on the tables" - Chelsea, Peace Corps Volunteer
"I like that now we have a place to play." - 2nd grade student, Project Beneficiary