During the 2013-2014 fiscal year, BECAS has solidified it’s place in Barrio Santa Maria. Five years ago, BECAS was created out of conversations with adolescents, parents, and teachers. Those conversations with students and their families have continued and today BECAS is an established and integrated member of the neighborhood. All our programs have arisen out of expressed needs; such as creating a high school program, and adding health care to the program. This past year, we focused on strengthening all of these programs.
To highlight some of these actions:
Soledad was hired as the high school program coordinator. Under her leadership, the teenagers created goals for the school year. At the end of the year, they reviewed their goals and during a celebration, practiced their public speaking as they related how they had reached them. Goals ranged from working on building better relationships with parents to excelling in school.
BECAS parents continued to enhance their own community. Parenting classes touch on subjects such as inter-partner violence, nutrition, and education. Parents share their own stories with each other, Lili, and Soledad. The safe community has become a place where parents call on each other for daily support and share small joys. We see the strength of this community as a major success and one that not only benefits the kids but also the entire community!
Wendy was having a hard time in school and her school schedule left her unable to attend BECAS tutoring or enrichment programs. Along with public schools, we partner with a private school that accepted Wendy as a student. Her new schedule allowed her to regularly attend BECAS tutoring and enrichment, as well as allowing Lili, our coordinator, to help her catch up academically. With guidance and community effort, Wendy has blossomed over this past year. There are many factors in this success, and BECAS will continue to advocate for Wendy and her family.
Last fiscal year, BECAS received $14,557.00 in donations. We spent $10, 511.59 in running the program. Over 95% of our expenditures were for the direct support of the scholars. The cash balance at the end of the fiscal year was $24,962. We take our commitment to each scholar and his or her family seriously. Towards that end we maintain sufficient cash reserves to ensure that we can continue to provide for the scholars’ educational expenses for up to two years in the event of an unforeseen interruption in our revenue stream.
To support each scholar for one year, with holistic, in-depth interventions that BECAS provides, costs $800. This includes “scholarship” which is the cost of schooling, “health care” including physicals, dental care, glasses, and “Beyond the Barrio” which consists of family support, tutoring, community service, and cultural outings.