Supporting the children of Honduras
and their families since 1973
Jenny Smith School

Jenny Smith played a large part in the day to day running of CH Trust. Sadly she died in August 2018, after a short illness. Her responsibilities included recording all the financial transactions and the preparation of the accounts for us. She was also responsible for the child educational sponsorship that we ran, offering the chance of education to children from very poor families. In these ways she has helped CH Trust to function, resulting in many changed lives. Over the years she has also been instrumental in providing help to thousands as she helped sort and pack goods for the container shipments we sent out annually to Honduras until 2015.
With money raised in memory of Jenny, we sought a project that reflected her work in Honduras. Cesar proposed the building a desperately needed school in Pasado Grande. This village is to the south of Valle de Angeles (the place where CH Trust started work 47 years ago).

Every child deserves the opportunity to receive an education. It is hard to imagine the frustration of parents who are too poor to provide what is necessary for their children to enjoy the basic right of an education.
Over the years three adjacent villages, one of which is Pasado Grande, had approached the government to ask for a school for their children. Although sympathetic, the government required the local authority to provide the money to build the school. This rural area is very poor area and unable to raise the necessary funds. Neither did they have any contacts to help them. As a result, many of the parents and their children have received no primary education and cannot read or write. Even in Honduras, this carries a social stigma as well as individual lack of self-esteem. Some local children have managed to receive an education by walking for one and a half hours to a school in another area. Unfortunately, they were told that this could not continue this year because the school is fully subscribed from its own catchment area. How the children and parents felt when they were told there was to be no more lessons is hard to imagine. It was in this scenario that Cesar proposed the building of a school as a project to use the money given in memory of Jenny in a way that provided a fitting tribute to her contribution to the children of Honduras. The proposed school was to be named after Jenny Smith.

Thus, the money given for Jenny was released to start what has now turned out to be a much bigger on-going project rather than that originally envisaged. The initial proposal started as a one classroom school. However, the local Mayor and council decided to offer a much bigger site with the request to build two large, rather than one modest, classrooms. The site was difficult in that it was located on a severely sloped hillside. The extra cost involved was recognized, with need for additional fund raising. However, the opportunity offered by the new proposal was deemed to be to be achievable and not to be missed. The school was started in December after official permission was granted.
Thus, the school we started to build in memory of Jenny Smith has taken on a life of its own. We have had to build rather more and quicker than we expected to allow the children to start school in the first week of the new school year in a safe environment.
It has been a race to get the school sufficiently complete for the children to attend at the beginning of the school year (the first week of February). Members of the village have helped by providing some of the unskilled labour.
The build itself has been challenging due to the steep angle of the land requiring substantial foundations and retaining walls to keep the construction secure on the mountainside, especially when the annual storm rains arrive. The playground is also split level, in sympathy with the land slope, with a five-foot retaining wall dividing the two areas.

I am delighted to announce that it has been possible to get the classrooms finished so that the children could start the new school year. However, if you look closely at the photograph you can see building supplies stacked behind them as the construction continues. There is still a lot to do.
To enable school to start they had to complete the two toilets, a wash pila and a plastic water tank to supply the toilets. The bigger challenge was building a large septic tank, as there is no mains sewage system in the area. There is still much to do but the children do have a school, albeit still an ongoing building site. Here they will receive a basic education which is accessible to every child in the area.

We still need to raise funds to deliver outstanding features such as, perimeter walls, gates and a number of other school needs including flattening a section of land for the school vegetable garden.

The official name of the school, which can never be changed,
is:- Centro de Educacion Basica Gubernamental Proheco ‘Jenny Smith’

The school is now operational, with 41 children and two teachers. As it is a very poor area, we are offering educational sponsorship to those children who need it. This provides the uniform and all the other items needed for school, an otherwise new and unplanned expense for many of these families. Sponsorship is a one off payment of £60 per child for the school year.

Updates will follow as this project developes.


Delivery of water for construction Storage of water for construction Digging of septic tank Sceptic tank construction Measuring out of the school Construction of the foundations School construction on a hillside Construction of school Installed toilet Toilets and pila Delivery of chairs for school Delivered chairs in classroom School year starts amid construction Kids studying in partially finished classroom School Jenny Smith memorial banner Jenny Smith