Benefactors Tour Facility

Friends of Barron was recently able to inaugurate a temporary computer classroom for the Secondary School in Barron due to the generous contribution of computers from Joe & Berenice Oviatt (11 computers) and Dave & Elaine Greiner (7 computers). With a lot of help from the Estrella del Mar IT department member Carlos Mercado and others, the computers were wiped clean, reprogrammed and installed in a regular classroom over in Barron after electrical wiring improvements had been made. The computers are connected to an Internet tower at the school that allows reception of a signal shared by the Barron Elementary School. Using a device residing on EDM’s radio tower located at the gate entrance, the signal is relayed to the elementary school and then on to the secondary school. Students who have never had internet access can now begin to view a whole other world.


As soon as the new computer laboratory is complete, the students will be able to have class without displacing a third of the population every time. Currently, there are three classrooms that house 100 students. When the new computer lab is complete, students will be able to attend class without disturbing other students. The new lab is about half complete. Another $60,000 pesos is required to finish it. FOB has committed to provide matching funds to the people of Barron to finish the classroom. They have raised about $20,000 pesos so far with raffles and collection days out on the highway. As they near their goal, they are now getting bids from local contractors in anticipation of completing the much-needed project.  If you would like to contribute to this project, please contact Dale Lyster (Condo #1117 – 178-0117) or Dick McGuire (Condo #1105  – 178-0105). If you intend to leave a check, please make it out to “FOB CANAM AC”. Because the Mexican banks will not accept corrected checks, please make out the check exactly as indicated and do not have any spelling errors or other corrections. FOB is a registered charitable organization and you will receive a receipt that indicates that the funds went to a Mexican charity.



Update on School Construction Projects

Friends of Barron just donated $9500 MX to match kindergarten parents’ work and donations to complete the new classroom at the Barron kindergarten. Funds were used to buy bookshelves, coat racks, teacher’s desk, a whiteboard and a wall-mounted television. The parents painted the classroom, leveled and graveled the ground outside the classroom and donated miscellaneous furniture to finish the job.

The project to build a new computer classroom for the secondary school started in 2010 with FOB helping the school to raise $25,000 MX to obtain a government match of $25,000 MX to begin the project. By August of 2010, foundation and walls were up. The 2011 fund raising effort to complete the computer classroom with roof, doors and windows raised another $25,000 MX ($15,000 MX raised by student families in Barron and $10,000 MX contributed by FOB). The money was deposited with the Mexican government with the expectation of winning another $25,000 MX match. With these $50,000 new construction pesos, the families of Barron hope to see the computer classroom finished before the next school year begins in August 2011. Once the building is complete, the Mexican Government is offering to outfit the classroom with 30 new computers.

Project Update

SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAM : The 2010-2011 school year scholarship program to provide 50% of the cost to send 15 Barron kids to preparatory school (high school) in Mazatlan began in August, 2010. Each scholarship is worth $10,000 MX payable in five successive installments throughout the school year. Each successive payment requires students and parents to present grades and attendance records to the parent-teacher committee. We are now half-way through the school year and of the 15 students that started the program in August, 13 remain and are producing good grades and attendance. Two students were dropped from the program in October 2010 because they failed to present grades and attendance records. The parent-teacher committee will evaluate final grades and attendance records at school year end to decide which students are eligible to continue on the program for the next school year. The success of our fund raising efforts will determine whether we will be able to fund the students already in the program and accept new applications from this years’ secondary school graduating class.
CONSTRUCTION PROJECTS; Secondary School: Last year, FOB helped the Barron secondary school raise $25,000 MX to build a new computer classroom. The Mexican Government matched the $25,000 pesos for a total of $50,000 MX. Work began in July, 2010. Foundations and walls were completed before the funds ran out. FOB is again helping the secondary school raise another $25,000 MX by March 15, 2011 with the hope of getting another government match. With the next $50,000 MX, we hope to see the roof and floor completed so that the space, although not ready to be a computer classroom, will at least be usable as an instruction classroom in 2012. If fundraising goes as planned, the computer labs will be fully equipped and operational in 2013.
Kindergarten School: The Barron Kindergarten is overcrowded to the point that the principal had to give up her tiny office as a classroom. The principal now conducts her business under a tree in the schoolyard. The parents of the kindergartners raised $22,000 MX in cash and materials to begin construction of a new classroom. This was enough to lay the foundations and put up the walls, but not enough to finish the project to the point where a classroom is usable. The parent-teacher committee appealed to FOB for assistance to finish the project and we agreed to commit $20,000 pesos to the effort. This amount will get them a roof and a floor and make the classroom usable (if it doesn’t rain). Meanwhile, they are looking at ways to raise more money for doors, windows and electrical wiring.
FUNDRAISING: During the period January 2010 – January 2011, FOB raised $322,000 MX from the following sources:
Individual donations : 56%
Charity Golf Tournament: 22%
Dinner & Silent Auction: 17%
50/50 Super Bowl Draw: 5%
Fundraising this year is off to a much slower start with individual donations standing at about $15,000 MX. No commitment yet from the Charity Golf Tournament (we are hopeful that this will surpass last years’ generous donation), $8000 MX from the 50/50 Draw and hopes for a successful Fiesta Dinner and Silent Auction on March 5th, 2011. As always, your generous support of Barron’s kids is greatly appreciated.

Fall Progress Report

Scholarship Program
With the recent generous donation of $9600 pesos by Sonny Wong, we have now raised almost $97,000 pesos towards our goal of $150,000 pesos to fund the 2010-2011 scholarship program to send 15 Barron students to preparatory school in Mazatlan. Thanks so much for your generosity.

Each of 15 student parents received scholarship payments of $2,000 pesos in August and October of 2010. Parents are required to present grades and proof of attendance for their students before payments are made. The next payments will be distributed 15 Jan 2011.

Computer Classroom
Friends of Barron donated nearly $24,000 pesos toward construction of a new computer classroom at the secondary school. The total budget for this project is estimated to be around $250,000 pesos. The Barron community (including the FOB contribution) and the Mexican Government match amounted to about $100,000 pesos in funding for this project for 2010. The money was used to complete foundations and walls for the new classroom. Fundraising will continue for this project in 2011.

The library, located in the Barron primary school, opened to the public in March, 2010. FOB funded a 6 month position for a librarian to maintain a regular schedule to keep the library open outside of school hours. In December, we will review the usage and public interest in the library.

Secondary School Project Update

The effort to plan and build a computer classroom at the secondary school passed its first milestone last week when the Sinaloa School System’s Quality Schools Program matched the $25,000 pesos raised by Barron Schools and Friends of Barron. This was a joint effort between the FOB Program and the Community of Barron. Barron hosted a Valentine’s Day Dance and a raffle to raise $11,000 pesos and FOB used the funds raised at the Super Bowl Sunday 50/50 Draw as well as a portion of the Silent Auction proceeds to push them over the goal line. Plans for the new classroom have already been provided and efforts to secure a construction bid are underway. The next round of funding for the project will begin in the fall of 2010.

"Padres de las Escuelas" Raise Money for School

The school fathers in Barron recently raised over $2700 pesos in support of the Friends of Barron initiative to air condition the secondary school. The committee went door to door soliciting donations and were able to collect the sum. Thank you Padres de las Escuelas!

Wish List for 2010

1. Finish Rewiring 2 classrooms (also new electrical box with 220 v) DONE!
2. Finish installing cistern for water DONE!!
3. Replace pump for the cistern DONE!!
4. Build a security house for pump DONE!!
5. Buy 2 shelves for books DONE!!
6. Install 4 overhead fans DONE!!
7. Classroom supplies
8. Computer and printer
9. Books for classrooms
10. Gravel for Playground
11. Outside Storage facility
Total: 60,000 pesos

Elementary – Library
Renovate an empty classroom to make a Community Library (see the before and after photos below). We have already:

1. Repaired leaky roof DONE!
2. Sanded and painted walls DONE!!
3. Refinished floor DONE!!
4. Added 4 windows DONE!!
5. Placed security bars over 4 windows DONE!!
6. Installed 6 large 6’ bookshelves DONE!!
7. Electrical work for air conditioner DONE!!
8. Bought 14 trapezoid tables DONE!!
9. Bought 42 chairs DONE!!
10. We need a computer and printer
11. We need more books for library
12. Proposed Part time Positions for Library and Computer Lab (2 people for 3 days a week @ 1,500 pesos/ mo or 18,000/year.) We are also looking for volunteers for these positions.
Total: 137,000 pesos


1. Air Condition three classrooms and principal’s office DONE!!
Total: 42,000 pesos
2. Support school in its application for a computer classroom. There are only 3 classrooms in the school – one for each grade and no room for computers. There are 35, 40 and 42 students in each of the classes. The community needs to raise 30% and government funding will provide 70%. So far the parents have raised 4000 pesos and will sponsor a dance and a raffle later this Spring.
Total : 87,000 pesos. (We will match what is raised by the community against this amount)
3. Scholarship and Adopt a Student Programs – These programs are aimed at encouraging greater attendance at Preparatory Schools (grades 10, 11 & 12) in Mazatlan (Barron has no Prep School). Under the Adopt a Student program, EDM owners and others will have the opportunity to support a student of their choice for Prep School. The Scholarship program will target and reward high performing students.
4. Bussing Program – One of the largest expenses for parents to send their kids to Prep School in Mazatlan is transportation. With the objective of encouraging maximun Prep School attendance for the kids of Barron, we are evaluating a bussing subsidy to assist with this expense.

Town of Barron
The Cosgrove family has assumed the sponsorship for the Barron Little League Team for the 2010 baseball season. Ken invites you to attend the league games in Mazatlan every Sunday.

What Did We Buy in 2008?

Elementary School

10 tables and 20 chairs for grade one classroom (replaced old metal ones)Library
renovated an unused classroom to make it into the new Media Classroom
bought co-axle cable for Internet access
computer technician from Estrella del Mar worked on a weekend to wire the classroom
20 small laptops were provided by TelMex through a contest the school entered so the school now has 27 computers – a full lab!Primary EntrancewayGreen Computers

Secondary School
Secondary School wanted a front wall and gate to the school as well as fencing around the school and playground to keep the chickens and pigs out. Friends of Barron paid for the front wall and gate and the school board did the fencing.

Classroom supplies were donated from Estrella del Mar owners (pencils, paper, felt pens, erasers, art supplies)

What did we buy in 2007?

3 white boards for the 13 elementary and secondary classrooms that had old blackboards in poor repair
Donation of 10 more white boards thanks to Norm Shaw.
Estrella del Mar workers installed all the white boards
1 filing cabinet (Principal had piles of paper on the floor – no where to file them)
Mexican flag and flag pole for assemblies at secondary school
School supplies from Estrella del Mar owners (pencils, paper, felt pens, erasers)Computer Classroom