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Migrant Justice: Housing for CIS University Scholarship Student 2021

Source: CIS El Salvador

We are grateful to many of you who support CIS scholarship and leadership development program through your church, community organization, foundation, academic institution, or directly to CIS. It is truly a miracle that students who are the first in their family and are from communities where no one had ever gone to university are graduating and making up the 4.6% of students in El Salvador who earn a university degreeI am asking you to give a special one-time contribution to expand our student housing program so that those most in need can graduate from university and bring their families out of poverty and become empowered leaders to work for change.  

Many students cannot travel back and forth to their community to university each day because of distance, expense, and security.  We do not have sufficient space for the demand for students who need housing closer to the university.  As plans for opening the universities to classroom learning, many new students have requested to enter already overflowing small apartments.  The overcrowding was lessened by the pandemic as some students were able to go home and study with CIS provided computers and internet.  Still, some stayed in CIS dormitories due to extremely inadequate internet connections in their village. We want to prepare for the 2022 cycle to have space for students to live and study.

For this reason, we are asking you for a one-time investment for the CIS to acquire an additional apartment for university scholarship students.

Our goal is to raise $ 80,000 to purchase an apartment that could house 10 University Scholarship Students. This is to purchase a spacious apartment in a secure area by the end of the year. 

  • If 10 people committed to sponsoring student housing for their 6 years at university, we would raise $6,000 x 10 = $60,000

  • If 20 people committed $1,000 or the equivalent of one year of a room rental, we would have the remaining $20,000 needed.    

Consider the impact in making your decision to donate to this important investment:

  • One student pays an average of $1,000 to rent a room in the vicinity of the university for one year.

  • $6,000 would be the expense for one student to rent a room for the 6 years of his/her university career.  

  • Currently, renting an apartment where 8 students could live in the area would cost between $5,000 - $7,200 per year which brings the cost down from renting an individual room. Still investing in real estate provides long-term stability. 

  • Students pay for the water, electricity, and internet.  They also pool funds for meals.  They would spend more bus fare if they had to travel each day, and so have more funds available for their studies.  It also means CIS does not have added expenses after the purchase of real estate and students learn economic responsibility.

  • The student apartments are a new learning experience for students.   Students learn to live in community with shared space, rules, and respect.   Many Salvadoran males learn to cook and clean for the first time.

  • CIS goal is to raise funds between now and the end of the year to have a space decided on for January 2022 semester.  

  • The most economically marginalized students cannot afford to study with the CIS scholarships without support for housing as well. 

CIS currently subsidizes student housing in different manners:   we own two apartments in San Salvador purchased in 2017 and 2018.  Sister relations pay for rental in San Salvador, San Miguel, and San Rafael Cedros.   Cinquera students receive a larger monthly scholarship to pay for an apartment in San Salvador.  Other students stay with relatives or travel back and forth each day.   Sixty-four of over 200 CIS university scholarship students rely on subsidized housing in addition to scholarships to be able to study.  Students from the following communities have benefitted: San Pedro Perulapan, Suchitoto, San José Palo Grande Isla Tasajera, Isla El Espíritu Santo, Estanzuelas, Llano Largo, Ita Maura, San Pablo Tacachico, Comasagua, Tamanique, Distrito Italia, Comunidad Ellacuria, Cinquera, and San Rafael Cedros Students studying in their home villages under much hardship during the pandemic.