Yesterday, after months of crunching numbers, the KKIS Project submitted this year’s order of school supplies that will be distributed in August to about 1,200 students in four schools and a social service project in Playa del Carmen, Mexico. Our challenge this year is to live up to what our name states: Keeping Kids in School. Some startling statistics came across our desk recently stating that in Playa del Carmen, only 1 in 3 of students in elementary school continues to junior high and even less go on to high school or graduate.
For the past four years KKIS has helped kids in several elementary schools with school supplies and this will continue, but this year we also began meeting with the parents of students in the 6th grade classes at these schools, telling them we want to continue to help keep their kids in school as they grow up. The 6th grade graduates from each school enroll in several different middle schools and consequently we needed names and telephone numbers where they could be reached. About 1/3 of the parents attended these meetings, were very forthcoming with this information and asked for copies of our explanation to give to those unable to attend but who would leave the information with the directors for us.
So, with all these numbers in our pockets we began to make lists of school supplies requested. We compared two major papelerias and decided to stay with Tony’s on Ave. 30 and Calle 12. They gave us wholesale prices and offered a further 5% discount if we could get the order done by closing time yesterday. And we did it!