At right: Top students from local schools have been brought together to tackle the community challenges spanning health and small business development.
Below left: Xela AID Director, Guatemala, Luis Enrique de León meets with students monthly.
Below right: Young Leaders participate in Xela AID project to provide training in best agriculture practices.
Xela AID is committed to developing the leadership skills of Guatemala's youth who will inherit the earth and, for better or for worse, the legacy that is being created today. Toward that end, Xela AID has assembled top students from 30 schools in the San Martin Chile Verde area. The students meet monthly at Centro de Estudios, Xela AID's Study Center, located on the second floor of Xela AID's June Russel-Glennon Clinic.
Under the leadership of Luis Enrique de León, Xela AID's Director in Guatemala, these "Future Leaders" undertake youth development projects spanning hygiene, health education, infectious disease prevention and nutrition, through environmental themes such as sustainable agriculture practices, reforestation and the prevention of pollution and small business development. During Xela AId's Mission Trips, the young leaders interact with volunteers and present case studies on local challenges, potential solutions, and the part they wish to play in the solutions. The students are also charged with passing on what they have learned to other students.
Future Leaders is a program that is key to Xela AID's success. Launched in 2011, assessment tools are being developed to understand the effectiveness of the program so that it can be optimized for best success.