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ERIC Number: EJ929989
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Nov
Pages: 6
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 5
ISSN: ISSN-1538-6619
Lessons Learned from Rural Paraguay: Fostering Child Development through Empowerment, Unity, and Cooperation
Stuart, Jeana M.; Austin, Ann M. Berghout; Peairson, Shannon; de Aquino, Cyle Nielsen; de Burro, Elizabeth Urbieta
Young Children, v65 n6 p32-37 Nov 2010
In Paraguay conditions for rural children living in poverty are often difficult. At least 14% of children age 5 years and younger show moderate to severe physical stunting (UNICEF 2009). More than half of the children in primary school have repeated at least one grade by the time they complete the sixth grade. Rural families living in poverty, who typically speak Guarani, are often excluded from the legal business of the country, which is usually conducted in Spanish. To address these conditions, Pastoral Social, a Catholic Church relief organization, established Pastoral del Nino in Paraguay in March 1995. Largely a volunteer organization, Pastoral del Nino employs a community-building model in which parents learn about children's needs and are encouraged to work together to strengthen the community. Pastoral's long-term benefits are readily apparent. Children who participated in the program as young infants and toddlers now thrive in elementary school, where most of their studies are in Spanish rather than their home language of Guarani. In an area where most parents do not attend school beyond the fifth grade, some Pastoral graduates are setting goals of becoming teachers, nurses, and other educated professionals. They look forward to the future with hope. Parents who were once unable to read or write now teach others literacy skills. Some serve as Pastoral volunteers themselves and help to mentor others.
National Association for the Education of Young Children. 1313 L Street NW Suite 500, Washington, DC 22205-4101. Tel: 800-424-2460; Tel: 202-232-8777; Fax: 202-328-2649; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Adult Basic Education; Adult Education; Early Childhood Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Paraguay