Building a School in DR

Who Are We Helping?

In 2012, FNE International facilitated the first art therapy trip to FUCPE, a community school located in Villa Hermosa, one of the poorest sections in La Romana, Dominican Republic, plagued with highest crime rates in some of the most dangerous neighborhoods in the province. Villa Hermosa has with a population of 89,204 (76,598) of predominantly Haitian Dominican ancestry enticed to populate the region by the mammoth sugar cane plantations and refineries that exploited the migrant population.

While working in La Romana, additional opportunities to partner with the community and the school emerged. The school, just four classrooms for over 300 students offers only half day classes where multiple grades share the same space and teacher. It lacks a library, cafeteria, and access to a nurse or other healthcare services conducive to a safe and successful learning environment. A majority of the students enrolled in FUCPE, of Haitian-Dominican ancestry, face systemic discrimination, and are unable to attend high school or college if they do not present an identification card.

How Are We Helping Them?

Together with KaTO, an architectural non-profit specializing in projects with significant and sustainable social impact, and community partners, FNE International is positioned to create an innovative approach to development that scaffolds our understanding of human development, differentiated education, and integrated therapeutic services that empower individuals to author their stories. The project is estimated to cost $2.5 million and will be FNE’s largest undertaking to date. The magnitude of this project is fueled by the desire expressed by many students, “to take the ideas in their minds and translate them into something”.