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Perkins in Latin America & the Caribbean: 2023 Highlights

This year, Perkins worked on projects and programs in five Latin American countries. We share photographs and memories that celebrate our achievements in the region.

A young student seating at a wood table, holding and looking at a card. Her teacher standing behind her and watching the activity

Our year in 2023

At Perkins, our Latin American & the Caribbean program works in five countries across the region: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Mexico, and the Dominican Republic. We are excited to share our past year in photos! Together with local collaborators, we are building a world where every child belongs.

An elementary aged boy plays soccer with his teacher.

January

Kicking off the year with a memorable visit to our programs (in collaboration with SEGEY) in Yucatán, Mexico. Perkins International Programs staff united for a team retreat, which left us with unforgettable moments.

Here, Perkins’ Europe and Eurasia Region Program Manager, Nina, enjoys a joyful soccer game with a student during recess – a perfect blend of work and play! ⚽️

A young student at her desk using her hands to explore a tactile map of Brazil. It also captures the hands of other adults interacting with the student during this educational activity.

February

In Brazil, Perkins works in inclusive public schools, an environment where students, both with and without disabilities, share the same learning space.

Here, Ana, a 4th-grade student from Macapá, Brazil, studies geography by using a tactile map to learn more about her country.

 In a school hallway, a boy in a wheelchair reaches out his hands to a teacher standing in front of him

March

The bonds between teachers and students are truly special. Adriana is a dedicated educator who has not only completed Perkins International Academy courses but is now a tutor. She played a pivotal role in Valen’s academic journey as his teacher until preschool.

Despite now being in separate classes, Adriana continues to shower Valen with attention, exchanging warm hellos across the hallways of the Helen Keller School in Mendoza, Argentina.

Lidiane, a mother and Family Coordinator for Perkins in Brazil, and Kelly Cristina, another mother, are standing in front of a colorful school mural that says, "No one lets go of anyone's hand." The two extend their arms and hold hands.

April

“No one lets go of anyone’s hand” — this photo encapsulates the spirit of collaborative efforts Perkins is undertaking with families in Brazil. Lidiane Jacomini, Perkins Education Coordinator for Brazil, standing on the left, is responsible for leading initiatives that cultivate collaboration between families and schools for the benefit of children with disabilities.

Holding her hand is Kelly Cristina, a mother of a child with autism, who participated in the first Perkins regional meeting for families in the country.

A group of 22 adults, half seated and half standing, posing for an official photo during the strategic working group meeting.

May

In Chile, Perkins collaborates with partners, including public schools, non-profit private schools, and universities.

Perkins also established the Strategic Working Group: GEDIM (Grupo Estratégico de Discapacidad Múltiple y Sordoceguera), where leaders unite to coordinate best practices and drive impactful changes for the benefit of children with disabilities in the country. 💪🌐

A boy and his mother sit at a desk engaged in his school work.

June

Our Model Programs in  Sao Paulo state, Brazil, kicked off to a strong start this year! Bernardo, a child with disabilities, received direct support from a teacher in an inclusive public school classroom.

Thanks to a unified collaboration with the Suzano municipal government, school staff, and families, we are able to help more children with disabilities receive a quality education. 🌟📚

A student wearing glasses is touching a colorful adapted book complete with textures and accessible formats,

July

At Alberto Juaire School in Mendoza, Argentina, educators are putting resources and strategies into action, fostering an inclusive environment. 📚

Here, a student dives into an engaging adapted book, complete with textures and accessible formats, to explore the contrasts between various habitats, all presented in an enchanting story about a curious mouse. Education is not just about learning; it’s about sparking curiosity and fostering a love for exploration!

A child in a wheelchair, dressed in a red and blue costume, looking at the camera and smiling.

August

August in Brazil was a time to dive into the vibrant traditions of Brazilian folklore.

At Tia Chiquinha Early Education Center in Macapá, one of Perkins’ Model Programs, both kids and adults come together for a lively arts and crafts session. The spotlight is on the pink dolphin, a native creature of the Amazon River.

A group of 9 adults, standing side by side, posing for an official photo after a stakeholders meeting.

September

The Ministry of Education of the Dominican Republic (MINERD), the Foundation ONCE Latin America (FOAL), and Perkins stand united, side by side, with pride in their collaborative effort to develop a national educational model for students with deafblindness. 

A child in a wheelchair, dressed in a red and blue costume, looking at the camera and smiling.

October

“Little Derek,” a 7-year-old from the school Centro de Atención Múltiple VIII, in Aguascalientes, Mexico, channeled his inner Chucky for a costume contest and parade celebrating Halloween and  Día de Muertos at school. 🎃 

Along with schools, our Model Programs offer high-quality education and empower kids with disabilities to participate fully in cultural and community activities. Everyone deserves the opportunity to celebrate traditions and create lasting memories!

Three women and a man sitting at a long wooden table. On the table, there are some colorful toys and other materials. The man is showing the participants a wire.

November

At Perkins, we champion universal design! The first Perkins Adaptive Design Center outside of the US is located in Merida, Yucatán, and on its second year anniversary, brought together physical therapists to learn how to design new adapted devices. 

Here, a group learns how to adapt switches to activate toys, a pivotal skill that empowers them to create tailored solutions that can have many other applications in everyday life. These therapists returned to their schools with the skills to create adaptive solutions for their students with disabilities so that they can learn and enjoy school!

A group of 12 young children is sitting around a box. In front, the teacher is also seated with some yellow materials, telling a story.

December

In Cordoba, Argentina, we are in early childhood programs.  With guidance from Perkins  Guadalupe, Santa Rosa’s early education center teacher, can make story time more engaging for all of her students.

Here, you can see her reading a story that includes sound, textures, and characters made of craft materials. This adapted activity allows the students with disabilities to participate and learn with the rest of their classmates.


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