As you will read below, there is a LOT we are doing for the kids - your support is greatly appreciated!
Youth ambassador program
In the Dominican Republic, nearly one third of youth between the ages of 15-24 are unemployed. A lack of education and training leaves many youth unprepared to enter the formal job market. Dove Missions Youth Ambassador Program is providing employability skills, market-driven technical and vocational skills, supervised professional internships, and follow-up coaching related to job preparation, search, and placement.
The Youth Ambassador Program has many benefits to the young people of Dove Missions and the greater community. The main goal is to educate teens in speaking English, while preparing them for employment through job training and placement. This program empowers youth, giving them self confidence and encouraging them to take leadership roles in their communities to inspire change in the barrio.
We have 5 students enrolled in this program who are participating in 3 month internships with Lifestyles Resorts. They each have a mentor accompanying them in a variety of the hotel's departments.
Upon successful completion of their internships, Lifestyle's Resorts will offer them jobs. This is an incredible opportunity for our students to have sustainable income and job advancement.
If you would like to sponsor one of the students in the Youth Ambassador program, we are currently asking for support with their transportation to and from the Lifestyle's Resorts and to cover their pay for working 4 days a week at the Center.
More students will be entering their Lifestyle's Resorts internships as long as funds allow!
The purpose of the Cosmetology Class is to provide necessary skills and training for jobs in the local marketplace. While a cosmetology license isn't required in the Dominican Republic, this class will give students adequate training to work at a salon or start an in home business. The class started in 2016 with a certified Dominican instructor teaching the curriculum. The students will receive a diploma from Dove Missions upon completion of the 8 month program.
There are hundreds of local salons and barbershops throughout the city of Puerto Plata, in addition to upscale salons in resorts and in tourist areas along the entire North Coast.
We need our salon training room fully furnished, in addition to being fully equipped with training supplies as a full service salon.
Students at the Center will learn how to prepare soil, germinate seeds, care for seedlings, transplant and care for a variety of vegetables and fruits. The project is an opportunity for the children to learn science, biology, math and healthy nutrition.
Once crops are harvested, children can take home fresh vegetables and fruits to share with their families. Our hope is that the children and their families may be inspired to plant a few vegetables or herbs in an in-home garden box as part of phase 3 of the program.
Potential future expansion could produce enough food for Dove Missions to feed the students fresh, healthy meals year round that were grown on site.
The rooftop garden is dedicated to Patti Riner, who passed away in 2016, and was a long time supporter and friend of the Dove Family.
Sports and recreation
Physical activity strengthens our students' bodies as well as their minds. We can hold regular classes inside our Youth Center, but there is no place in the barrios for our kids to play, just garbage filled beaches and sewage soaked streets. Part of our mission is to provide our children with "...a chance to learn, laugh and share a positive experience within a safe haven."