History : New Life Mexico’s Basketball Programme commenced in 2011 with over 300 children in five districts to provide a safe environment off the streets out of school hours. The clubs met on Tuesdays and Thursdays for two hours with New Life Mexico contracted specialist trainers running the clubs. In addition to two hours sport twice a week and related sports skills, the children also received weekly talks focussing on subjects including respect for peers and working in teams. A further 372 children took part in the programme during 2012-2013. Mario Aaron Guzman Lamas (Mayo) was the lead specialist contracted from 2011-2013 and went on to set-up his own non-profit basketball school Juega y Aprende por México.
Juega y Aprende Por México, a Mexican non-profit, provides basketball classes, at no charge, to over 125 children three times a week. Mayo, the Director, is an ex-professional player instilling discipline, values and fun in addition to the intense training. Basketball provides better physical and mental health in addition to providing confidence and team building capacities.
New Lifeline has in the past, and continues to provide training equipment, uniforms and sponsors two trainers for Juega y Aprende por México.
In 2015 “Dragons”, New Life Line’s community football team, opened with players selected from different secondary and high schools within Puerto Vallarta. The Club offers an opportunity for training and participating in the city football league which would otherwise not be accessible to these players.
Training sessions are three times a week for two hours. In addition to football skills, team building, discipline, respect and friendship are all important parts of the Club. The Club Manager & Coach both instil life lessons in order for the players to be responsible members of their communities. The Club Manager is New Lifeline’s Programme Manager, Ivan Bravo Carbajal. Dragon’s Coach, formally New Life Mexico Chidongongo Football programme trainer, is Juan Luis Vargas Guzman (Chino).
History : New Life Mexico’s “Chidongongo Football Programme” started in 2013 in four districts. The programmes, with ex-professional footballers and sports teaches, commenced with 10 football clinics for 3rd and 4th grade girls and boys (8-10 years old), continuing on with 18 football clincis for 5th and 6th grade girls and boys (10-13 years old). The programme finished in March 2014 with over 750 girls and boys taking part in an inter-colonia (district) tournament. In addition to trainers’ talks at each clinic, the club received visiting speakers, all of whom highlighted the importance of “team work” in their respective careers. Speakers included fire fighters, psychologist, a professional footballer who covered subjects including bullying, self-esteem, morals and values. A further 194 children took part in football clinics in 2014 organised by Juan Oswaldo Perez Joya and Felipe de Jesus Peña Chavez (ex-professional footballers) on New Life Mexico’s behalf.
In 2016 Juan Oswaldo Perez Joya (Oswaldo) and Felipe de Jesus Peña Chavez (Felipe) decided to set up Pitillal Community Football Club to enable all the Chidongongo Football participants to take part in future inter-colonia leagues/tournaments. Pitillal Football Club currently has over 150 girls and boys training five days a week and playing in a league every Saturday, against other teams formed by Chidongongo players.
New Lifeline has and continues to provide training equipment, uniforms and sponsors two trainers for the Pitillal Fooball Club.
History : New Life Mexico’s “My First 200 Words in English” was developed in 2012 to give primary school children an introduction to the English language and boost confidence prior to formal studying in secondary school. Retired teachers from the US and Canada volunteered their services for this programme, some of whom had previously taught English at the Street Kid Rehabilitation Centre with New Life Mexico. Worksheets and homework were provided to the participants at each lesson. The lessons lasted for an hour, followed by a craft activity for a further hour. Graduation certificates were provided to all those who completed the course. Between 2013 and 2015 over 200 children took part in this programme and it was renamed “My First 500 Words In English”.
In 2016 New Lifeline decided to transfer their teaching knowledge into colouring/workbooks to be made available as downloads on their website, at no charge, to all educators who wish to use them whether a volunteer, gap year student, school teacher or parent. To date New Lifeline has produced 3 colouring books (alphabet, occupations, verbs) both in English and Spanish (for Guatemalan children where Spanish is a second language) and 2 work books (schools, sport, months of year, days of week, shapes, colours) which are available here on our website under resources. New Lifeline plans to continue to add additional workbooks.
We continue to teach English at the Primary School of Joya’s de Pedregal in order to test and edit our English materials.
In 2017 New Lifeline launched an educational programme with the Puerto Vallarta Botanical Gardens. New Lifeline wishes to focus on educating deprived children on environmental issues and where food comes from by providing day trips to the Botanical Gardens for primary schools.
The Puerto Vallarta Youth Orchestra has 150 students who receive lessons three times a week; two group sessions and one individual lesson. Fees are charged according to income with 90% of students receiving grants – some up to 100%. A lending library of instruments is also available to students who are unable to afford their own. Regular performances are given throughout the year.
After school clubs, including music, have shown to provide an excellent environment to prevent children entering gangs and other street related activities. In 2016 New Lifeline provided musical instruments for the lending library, to be available to low income students.
Pasitos de Luz provides vital services to disabled children and their families living in extreme poverty in Puerto Vallarta and the surrounding communities. They offer these services free of charge so that families can continue to work and provide an income for them. The services include physiotherapy, nutrition and dietary assistance, special education, hydrotherapy, hygiene, occupational therapy and day care.
In 2015 New Life Mexico provided 250 cartons of vitamin milk, 50 kilos of Beans and Lentils to Pasitos de Luz every month, to provide protein to the children. New Lifeline continued to provide the same amounts in 2016.