What is Sifais?
SIFAIS is a space where social transformation occurs; it is a two way street that transforms apathy into hope, and hope into real, tangible opportunities for those who give and for those who receive.
This is achieved through a process that:
Begins with high quality, permanent, artistic, educational and athletic programs, taught by volunteers.
Continues with the improvement of the community surroundings through the coordinated participation of the private sector, the public sector and civil society
It's complemented by an ongoing communications campaign that promotes social awareness and solidarity leading to commitment and action.
SIFAIS seeks to create a domino effect of social transformation, proposing this system as an effective, adaptable and self-sufficient model that permanently provides the inspiration and actions required to promote the social entrepreneurship at all levels required to heal and regenerate the social tissue.
Out ideal goal is to turn volunteerism into part of our national culture, and help Costa Ricans realize the enormous personal, social and competitive opportunities that can be unleashed if everyone were to volunteer 3 hours a week to a cause of their choosing.
How can you help?
SIFAIS is a private non-profitable project that promotes self-advancement and social integration through the teaching and learning of art, sports or trades. Music, arts or sports are an excuse: the goal is social inclusion through:
The participant’s appreciation of their own skills.
The articulation between members that is inherent in a musical, artistic or sports group.
Awareness of how important it is to share one’s knowledge, even if it seems to be very small.
The conviction that we can always learn a lot more from others, even if they lack almost everything.
Since its start SIFAIS has shown its effectiveness as a two-way social integration tool, since socially marginalized groups have a need for support and help that is just as large as the need to give and serve by other groups, with better social and economic opportunities.
SIFAIS seeks to help satisfy both the need for support, recognition and promotion of society ́s less fortunate, and the social imperative to give, share and serve, experienced by those who are better off.
In SIFAIS, technical skills are important...but volunteer ́s ability to motivate their students to persevere and improve even when their environment is holding them back is even more important. On the other hand, volunteers will discover the life changing effect that take place when they have open and sincere interaction with the members of the community.
Who benefits from SIFAIS?
In SIFAIS, all members and participants of the project end up winning: those that learn, as well as those that teach; those that receive as well as those that give; the kids that receive the help as well as their families, and in that way, the whole community.
Volunteers experience an extraordinary change in the way they see their lives. They realize their own personal capabilities, the opportunities they have and the needs that others have, as well as the improvement potential that resides within each one of us.
Who can participate in SIFAIS?
Everyone that wants to teach and share what they know and those that are willing to learn are welcome in the project. The only thing that SIFAIS requires is commitment with the project and willingness to follow basic guidelines required to make the program reach its full potential (See: “My commitment to SIFAIS).
SIFAIS is specially directed to kids and teenagers, but adults may participate as well, as long as they are willing to both teach and learn.
Where does it operate?
For the moment SIFAIS is working in only at La Carpio, but the goal is to eventually expand the project and work in many other communities. The project has been welcomed by volunteers and neighbors of the communities, and we hope when can replicate it soon in other areas and work as motivation and incentive for other projects to bloom.
What are SIFAIS' convictions and commitments?
Values in Sifais
Constructive rebellion Passion and tenderness
Team work Creativity and pragmatism
Proactivity and empowerment Determination and optimism
Transparency and daring
1. Pass on what you learn: learning is easier when a friend is the one that teaches you. Safety starts when you trust others: we are
2. Certain that there is good will in every human
being, there only has to be a correct environment for it to come out with facility. All of us can give and learn; all of us need to
3. Receive and teach ;all of those that are
optimistic, generous, creative, humble and achievers have space in SIFAIS!
4. We give our time, not our spares.
5. We compromise personally, looking for creative resources and solutions in order to obtain our objectives even if we lack supplies.
6. We promote aperture ,initiative and independence in the development of our objectives.
7. We evaluate the needs, take decisions and take action even if we lack resources; we learn and rectify, creating our own way instead of waiting for it to be built.
8. We know that the real effect of our work is in the simple act of giving oneself to the others.
9. We treat everyone with affection and tenderness: since this can cure many wounds, especially when they lack the basic love.
10. We don’t whine nor criticize: we talk about problems with positive spirit and solve problems with optimism. We receive observations and suggestions with open arms and humble attitude.
11. We inform the team whenever we will be absent, contributing with the person that will substitute us in our area.
12. With diligence and creativity we look forward to making the most out of our resources especially our time.