Warm greetings from the village of Salto! Last year was really a difficult one for everybody, as the financial crisis and the global recess touched all of us, having their worst impact on the most vulnerable families and their children. This meant that we’ve had to use all our imagination not to increase our costs, while at the same time making all efforts to face up to ever greater challenges, setting priorities for our expenditures.
Our village lies in the north of the country in an environment that stopped being rural, as more and more slums and shantytowns sprung up in the area. It consists of 12 families, comprising 82 children and teenagers, so that responding to their individual needs, tackle their problems, finding alternatives of education, recreation and preparation for each of them is really a major challenge; all the more so if at the same time we seek to promote each individual family’s autonomy and have to manage this within a very restricted annual budget.
During the summer vacations the families organized themselves to go to the beach or camping for a few days and with those remaining in the village, several recreative activities and outings to the city were arranged.
The scholastic performance of the children has been diverse; those in elementary school did very well, but we aren’t getting the same achievements from our teenagers in high school, as there they encounter other levels of difficulty and it’s harder for them to persevere, despite the special tutoring they have to help them cope.
The youngsters in their pre-independence process receive specific support and advice, specially the three studying in Montevideo. But also those already independent visit the village with assiduity, either because they need something specific or require advice or just to spend time with their family and friends they grew up with.
We thank you for the tremendous loyalty that you’ve shown us, this magnificent sign of trust, of continuing standing by us even in hard times like these. In the name of the children and our whole team we wish you a Merry Christmas and a happy New Year!