Who is NCA?
Los Niños de Chapala y Ajijic, A.C. (NCA) is a non-profit, charitable organization, incorporated and registered in 1977 in Chapala, Jalisco, Mexico. NCA is recognized by the Mexican government (SAT Hacienda) and Instituto Jalisciense de Asistencia Social (IJAS). Our RFC Number is NCA-7700930-ME5. NCA submits semi-annual financial reports to IJAS.
What do we do?
Scholarships for Education. NCA assists qualifying, needy children and young adults in the Lake Chapala area to achieve their maximum educational potential by supporting the cost of their school tuition fees, books, supplies and special clothing, and where indicated, by providing an income supplement and/or assistance with related medical needs. NCA has helped well in excess of 1000 children over the past thirty years. Some beneficiaries of NCA are now practicing lawyers, doctors, accountants, marine biologists and engineers.
AccountabilityAs a non-profit, NCA is run by its board of directors and employees. We are the go-between between our sponsors, volunteer fund-raisers, and families of the students we have sponsered for money donated and raised. We operate with a very low overhead, 91% of money donated to our students go directly to them for their education related expenses. Only 9% goes to office overhead and staff expenses, and we're working to bring that down to 5%! Remaining funds for labour and office expensise come from our fund-raising activities. We have very strict controls and procedures in place to track all donations and funds raised to ensure that all expenses and funds paid out to our students are accounted for. NCA is one of only two lakeside charities that is recognized by IJAS.
A Community Organization. NCA is an all volunteer-based, hands-on organization, supported by several local community fund-raising groups and activities. This local community support enables NCA to guarantee that over 90% of all donated sponsorship funds are received directly by the children. Local community support helps pay for the Chapala and Ajijic project offices/drop-in centres, and the paid local assistants. The 9% set-aside is used for social affairs for the children and their families and operating expenses.
Personal Sponsors. NCA's principal individual benefactors (sponsors) are Canadians and Americans living either north of the US / Mexican border or residents of the Lake Chapala area. Currently we number more than 150 and there are approaching over 250 children and young adults in the program - from kindergarten to University, including one young lady who is now a graduate Marine Biologist and, most recently, a graduate Doctor! The young lady pictured above, GPA 9.8, wants to attend the University of Guadalajara when she graduates from high school. Her sponsor has already committed to stay the course with her as long as she keeps the faith and stays in school.
Group Sponsors. NCA is supported by a number of local and international organizations. These include:
- The Outreach Arm of St. Andrew's Anglican Church
- The International Chili Cook-Off (A local annual event)
- Instituto Jalisciense de Asistencia Social (IJAS – Jalisco government)
- A group of school children in Pleasantville, New York (the Grom group)
- The Ajijic branch of the Rotary club
- A Brownie Troup in California
- All of your Board Members and NCA Auxiliary
How do we work?
Student Evaluation. NCA maintains a Student Support Centre (The Jeanie Swentic Centre for Education) in Chapala. We maintain contact with the local Mexican community and identify families and children who are in need of our services. Profiles are taken, and those who meet our criteria – combining an 8.0 point GPA with low income – are added to our growing list of children seeking sponsors.
Additional Services.Out Chapala office serves as a centre for remedial tuition classes for those students who require extra help. We also provide English classes for our students and their parents, art classes, creative writing classes and free-of-charge access to the internet for all of our students.
Finding Sponsors. Information about eligible students is made available to all potential sponsors and will soon be posted on this website. The children and their situations are featured in local community publications and in the NCA newsletter that we mail or e-mail to members and potential sponsors. Information provided includes the family social and financial circumstances and the child’s profile and school situation. With this information we determine the recommended sponsorship level and include this in the information posted and sent to potential sponsors.
Becoming a Sponsor. Anyone interested in sponsoring a student should call or e-mail NCA at the numbers indicated in the Contact Us page. NCA will provide access to our file containing the pictures and descriptions of the students available for sponsorship. For non-Lakeside resident we can FAX or e-mail this information, or soon, it will be available here on this site. All donations, large or small are welcome. A US or Canadian dollar goes a long way in Mexico. Cheques should be made payable to Los Niños de Chapala y Ajijic, A.C. and mailed to one of the addresses on our Contact US page.