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University Rotaract Club Raises $1,000 to Provide Internet Access to Disadvantaged Youth in Rural Guatemala

06-08-2011 07:44 AM CET | Science & Education

Press release from: Roots & Wings International

Families from the village of Pasac in Nahuala, Sololá in Guatemala bring their children to explore the world of Internet.

Families from the village of Pasac in Nahuala, Sololá in Guatemala bring their children to explore the world of Internet.

The donation will help promote economic development in a community plagued by illiteracy, malnutrition and poverty

Spokane, WA, June 7, 2011– Secluded in the most remote regions of Guatemala, one of the poorest countries in Latin America, indigenous rural people make up 71% of the country’s poor population. These native groups are further isolated by their own languages and unique cultures and suffer discrimination. According to Roots & Wings International (RWI) (http://www.rootsandwingsintl.org), the key to promoting economic development in the region is to empower the local youth through education and technology. The non-profit is focused on serving the village of Pasac in Nahuala, Sololá, and the surrounding communities of impoverished rural Guatemala. In November 2010, RWI constructed the first tech center in the area. Thanks to a recent donation of $1,000 from the University of Lethbridge Rotaract University Club, the Center now has Internet access.

“In this day and age, access to technology is critical for economic development,” notes Erik Swanson, Founder of RWI. “Technology is a great resource in increasing access to education, freedom of speech, and human rights. Thanks to the donation, the 30 computers in the Center are now connected to the rest of the world. Now, we can better serve the 600 primary and secondary students in our tutoring and computer literacy programs, as well as our 25 university scholarship recipients. Also, five of the internet connected computers in the Center will be made available to the general public, giving several thousand villagers access to the outside world for the first time.”

RWI has several donation programs including contributing monthly, making a one-time donation, naming a scholarship, corporate gift matching, buying coffee, shopping at Amazon for the cause, volunteering with skills and time and starting a fundraiser. To learn more about the Center, and the different opportunities to donate, visit http://www.rootsandwingsintl.org/programs/learning-center.htm.

About University of Lethbridge Rotaract Club
The University of Lethbridge (the U of L) is based in Alberta, Canada, with campuses in Calgary, Edmonton and Lethbridge. Rotaract Club is a student-run club sponsored by Rotary International. Marie Robertson, Vice President of Finance for the University of Lethbridge Rotaract University Club, learned about RWI through a friend she met while in Guatemala.

About Roots & Wings International (RWI)
RWI was created in 2004 by Erik Swanson, a business attorney at Bullivant Houser Bailey PC, then the director of a high school in rural Guatemala. The mission was to improve the lives of Guatemala’s indigenous population through education, training and technology. Thanks to the support of individuals and corporate sponsors, RWI has been able to develop three different programs – University Scholarships, Computer Literacy and After-School Tutoring – to help the students from rural Guatemala work towards the development of their native communities. To learn more, visit http://www.rootsandwingsintl.org.

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About Roots & Wings International (RWI)
RWI was created in 2004 by Erik Swanson, a business attorney at Bullivant Houser Bailey PC, then the director of a high school in rural Guatemala. The mission was to improve the lives of Guatemala’s indigenous population through education, training and technology. Thanks to the support of individuals and corporate sponsors, RWI has been able to develop three different programs – University Scholarships, Computer Literacy and After-School Tutoring – to help the students from rural Guatemala work towards the development of their native communities. To learn more, visit http://www.rootsandwingsintl.org.

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