Newsletters - Oct 2011
Alongside Ministries en Nicaragua
Halle and Kathy August, Missionaries
This is the time of year that we usually dedicate our newsletter to the scholarship program. It is that time when we ask you to prayerfully consider making a commitment to a student for $500 a year to provide a high quality Christian education. This year we need your help more than ever. It seems that economic hardships in the world economy (and especially for you in the United States) and rising costs of education at Covanic (the private Christian school) have combined to bring us to the bottom of our scholarship fund. What this means for our scholarship program is that unless a student has a sponsor we can no longer fund his/her education out of the “extra” in our scholarship fund. For several years we had some very generous donations coming in to the scholarship fund which allowed us to pay the tuition and fees for those students that didn’t have a sponsor. Each year our numbers increased as students continued to pass through our preschool program and we enrolled them in the scholarship program. We started with three students in 2006 in Kindergarten. Two of those three will start 6th grade next year, completing the primary program and graduating out of the scholarship program. Since 2006 we have enrolled students each year until, next year, we would like to enroll 32 students. However, at this time, given the increase in the cost to attend Covanic we will only be able to enroll those who have a sponsor. Last year we had 12 sponsors. As you can see, this year we need those 12 sponsors to re-commit and we need an additional 20 to cover the costs of the additional students.
The 2012 school year (which runs from February to November) signals the peak of our enrollment in the scholarship program. With some changes occurring in the preschool program the decision has been made that the preschoolers that start in the scholarship program next year will be the last group we enroll. Our plan is to commit to provide for them for the next seven years until they graduate from 6th grade thus ending the scholarship program.
These next few weeks represent a critical decision making time. Enrolling students in October for the 2012 school year will save significantly on the cost of registration but knowing exactly how many students we can enroll is the big question that we are asking you to help answer. Kathy will be meeting with the financial director at Covanic this week to discuss the new and rising costs and to ask for additional discounts to keep the costs within our reach.
Here’s what you can do to help:
- Please pray for the meeting Kathy will have with the financial director, that communication will be clear and positive and that some of the costs might be lowered.
- Please pray for your financial involvement in this program whether it’s a one-time gift, a one-year commitment of $500, or a commitment to sponsor a student through to their 6th grade graduation (a $3500 commitment over 7 years or less).
- Please pray for others who need to give heed to the nudge of the Holy Spirit that this is a commitment to which God is calling them to respond.
- Please tell others about this program and our needs.
- Be creative in your thinking about who might need/want to hear about this program:
- Your youth pastor might consider “adopting” a student with his/her youth group. It would probably take only two car wash fund raisers a year for a youth group to come up with $500. The youth could be in contact w/ their sponsor student and possibly even meet their student on some future mission trip to Nicaragua.
- Are there cell groups or home Bible study/fellowship groups that meet at your church? If there are five families represented in a cell group that would only be a $100 commitment from each family to sponsor a student. Tell your Family Life pastor about this idea.
- Perhaps your church would like to sponsor a student. If less than half of the churches represented in our mailing list were to sponsor a child we’d have more sponsors than we need just like that!
We are committed to seven more years of this sponsorship program and hope to “finish the race” well. We can do that with your help.
Please visit our website and click on Scholarship and Roster to get more information about the scholarship program and to see the beautiful faces of the students in our program.
Thank you for your support of our ministry through your prayers, friendship and financial assistance.
Always a privilege to be serving together,
Halle and Kathy August
Alongside Ministries in Nicaragua
To receive a tax deductable receipt and a year-end tax report
please send your donations clearly marked
“For Halle and Kathy August” and “The Scholarship Program”
PO Box 301471
Portland, Oregon 97294