Puppets Take Children On A Journey of Self-Esteem and Growth

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Puppets Take Children On A Journey of Self-Esteem and Growth

a group of students putting on a puppet show for the crowdIn Bolivia’s Alpacoma community, young minds flourish under the guidance of passionate educators like Sonia, a teacher at the local after-school centre. She’s helping to shape the futures of over 120 children who eagerly participate in the centre’s clubs and activities.

One of these activities, puppetry, stands out as an innovative and transformative experience for students.


a girl stands in a theatre with a puppet

Kely is finding herself through the joys of puppetry

Kely, an 11-year-old who has been attending the centre for several years, is an enthusiastic participant in the puppetry club. She describes herself as “very outgoing” and says she likes to play football and cook.

Through puppetry, Kely says she has “learned to put myself in the position of others.”She tells us that she has taken the lessons she’s learned from the puppets and helped other children “be less shy and express themselves.”

For Sonia, puppetry is more than just an outlet for self-expression or creativity – it’s a tool for empowerment.Puppeteering is a vital instrument for children because it captures their attention,” she explains, helping them develop empathy and self-esteem, and navigate the complexities of childhood with confidence and compassion.

“Through puppetry, [children] can express their ideas and feelings, building confidence and self-assurance.”
Sonia, educator, Bolivia


a woman and children are cooking in an industrial kitchen

Educator Sonia leads students in cooking demonstrations

Puppetry is just one of the many activities offered at the centre. From chess clubs to cooking classes, children have access to a range of programs designed to nurture their talents and develop their competencies. For example, in the cooking class “children improve their skills and learn about healthy food,” Sonia says, “and in the chess club, they develop logic and decision-making skills.”

As Kely and her peers immerse themselves in these activities, they not only develop new skills but also cultivate a sense of purpose and ambition for the future.

Sonia says that “teaching is more than just a job – it’s a chance to guide and inspire.” She hopes that children will continue to engage at home in the activities they’ve participated in at the centre and turn them into “life projects.”

a woman reads a book to children

Sonia doing classwork with her students.

Both Sonia and Kely extend their heartfelt thanks to our Bolivian partners and CFTC donors for supporting this work and joining the students and educators of the Alpacoma Centre on “a journey of growth and transformation,” says Sonia, is thanks that this support is allowing for “improving the quality of life for the children and adolescents of the centre.

Kely adds, “I’m a really grateful child.

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