Today we spent some time in a more rural area of El Salvador being shown around by an organization called APSIES (Association for Intercommunity Health and Social Service in El Salvador), which organizes and funds various projects in small communities. Their focus is on health promotion and gender equality education.
Today they brought us to a couple of youth groups located in two different small towns. The first group, the Grupo Juvenil Quetzalcoatl, really impressed me with how grassroots and youth-run it was. Their youth community centre, which the youth built themselves, is located in a tiny agricultural village; in the centre they have one of the very few public libraries in El Salvador. They do dance classes, organize sports and recreation, and do community works like cleaning up garbage.
The youth groups were very inspiring because of their enthusiasm, and also the strong drive they had to create a better future for themselves. Most of the youth are living in extreme poverty, but they have goals like going to university or helping their community, which was such a hopeful thing to hear about. I think that their passion and organization is an example of what youth in Canada could also accomplish.
The group photo above is the Grupo Juvenil Quetzalcoatl. The photo below is from a dance presentation which the other youth group choreographed and performed for us.