In Nicaragua girls do not get the same opportunities as boys. In most families in Nicaragua girls are not allowed the same things as their brothers are. It is often not permitted for girls to play in the streets, to be a member of a sports club, go to a friend's house to do their homework or to ride a bike. Girls are expected to make themselves useful and not to "waste" their time. At home they have to help with washing clothes, cleaning, cooking, doing the dishes and they have to look after their younger brothers and sisters.
The Fundación Marijn has a large library full of books for training purposes and individual reading. The library was purpose-built at the request of schoolchildren, students and teachers, because the town of Bilwi with its 55,000 inhabitants had no library. Schoolchildren had no books; if lucky, the teachers might have a few. Information derived from the books is then written out on the blackboard and the children copy this, a practice at primary as well as secondary schools.
Since January 2007 we support a number of socially underprivileged children, so that they can attend school and can finish their education without being forced to work and to provide for their living. A total of 80 children participate in this programme that carries the meaningful name of Adelante!, which literally means 'forwards' and is also used in Nicaragua to motivate people and to welcome them. It is therefore an appropriate name for our programme. The aim of this programme is to teach children skills with which they can succeed in life.