A Visit to Escuela Brazos de Amor (School of Arms of Love)

Evaristo Cano and Dr. Irela Diaz realized the children in a poor neighborhood of Managua desperately needed a school of their own.  So they built them one – a section at a time.  A few years later the enrollment in the school is over 300 students.

Evarsito quit his job to oversee the school and become a teacher himself.  Dr. Irela teaches classes when she is not seeing patients at a health clinic in a rural community outside of Managua.  Dr. Irela also takes care of sick students – and other members of the community – in a makeshift exam room at the school.

The couple ask for a monthly donation from the families whose children attend the school – if they can afford it.  If they can’t, the children are welcome anyway.  The six teachers are paid as much as can be managed.  Often the donations from the neighborhood do not cover the teacher’s salaries and other expenses.  Evarsto and Dr. Irela often cover the gap themselves.

A look at the Escuela Brazos de Amor (School of Arms of Love)
A look at the Escuela Brazos de Amor (School of Arms of Love)
Dr. Irela and I stand in front of what is hoped to be the new pharmacy for the school and surrounding barrio (neighborhood)
Dr. Irela Diaz and I stand in front of the future new pharmacy for the school and surrounding barrio (neighborhood).
Evaristo Cano y Dra. Irela Diaz (husband and wife) stand together in the courtyard of the school they created - Brazos de Amor.
Evaristo Cano y Dra. Irela Diaz (husband and wife) stand together in the courtyard of the school they created – Brazos de Amor.
Dr. Irela in the clinical room at the school where she takes care of not only her students, but residents in the surrounding neighborhood as well.
Dr. Irela in the exam room at the school where she takes care of students and residents of the surrounding neighborhood.

Ellie took the opportunity to help teach one of the classes english – while speaking spanish!

My daughter, Ellie, teaching "English as as second language" class to other 13-year-old students.
My daughter, Ellie, teaching “english as a second language” class to other 13-year-old students.
Ellie interacting with students at the school
Ellie interacting with students at the school
Ellie and the students had a great time communicating with each other.
They had a great time learning from each other.

The next two images were taken from the road outside of the school walls.

A little girl peers at the tall, strange-looking guy with a camera who just got out of a van in front of their home. She received a $1 cordoba coin for her cooperation.
This is the younger brother of the girl from the above photo.  He ran away as soon as I asked their mother if I could take a photograph. After he saw his sister receiving a $1 cordoba piece, he decided this was easy money and returned!

The next set of images are of the school children themselves.  I took dozens of photos because, after their shyness wore off, everyone wanted to get their picture taken and see the results on the camera screen.  Here are a few of my favorites.

Hector and Christian – best buddies
The loved the camera!
A truly happy little student!
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Many of the girls at this school have brilliant green eyes. They were all beautiful.
ditto on the eyes and the beauty.

MY WEEK IN NICARAGUA SURE HAS GIVEN ME A LOT TO THINK ABOUT!

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6 comments on “A Visit to Escuela Brazos de Amor (School of Arms of Love)

  1. Gary, I really loved this post and accompanying photos of all the angels–you and Ellie included. Makes my heart soar. XOXOXO

  2. Your photography is beautiful! On our “life road” the experiences we have make us who we are. These days are life changing. Ellie said you have storms there. Have a safe journey and I will impatiently wait for a time for you two to share. I can only imagine how Amy and Max must feel.

  3. ME PARESE QUE ES UN ESTO MUY BUENO DE ESTAS PERSONAS ESPERO QUE TODAVIA EXISTAN PERSONAS DE BUEN CORAZON PARA QUE SE UNAN A AYUDAR A ESTAS PERSONAS

  4. OojJag hoppas dÃ¥ verkligen att det inte gÃ¥r sönder nÃ¥got mera för det räckte väl med det som redan är sÃ?a!er¶dHoppns det stoppar med det!Kram

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