Casa de Amistad, Centro de Enseñanza is a nonprofit organization dedicated to fostering the education and character development of Hispanic children and their families in coastal North County San Diego. It was incorporated in August 2001 as an expansion of the tutoring program at Solana Beach Presbyterian Church (SBPC). Each Tuesday and Thursday evening, children from the local community meet at the Casa facilities on the SBPC campus, where volunteer mentors assist the children with their homework. A Summer Enrichment Program is also offered in July/August. Since it began in 1997, the tutoring program has grown from serving just 3 children the first night to over 200 children annually. Over 100 individuals volunteer as educational mentors.
The cornerstone of Casa de Amistad is its Study Companions Program. The purpose of Study Companions is to provide educational mentoring with the goal of improving the academic achievement of Hispanic children in grades K-12. This is accomplished through relationship-building between students and mentors, homework coaching and encouragement, study skills development, character education and field trips. The program meets during the school year on Tuesdays and Thursdays. A Summer Enrichment Program for students in Grades K-6 is offered during July/August.
Casa parents are actively involved. Our parents’ group is expanding this fall to include parent education classes and quarterly family activities. Parents also support the program by volunteering in the classrooms and assisting with administration.
Casa de Amistad has developed several strategic partnerships. Solana Beach Presbyterian Church has made available to Casa de Amistad approximately 3,164 square feet of facility space. Facilities are located at the corner of San Rodolfo and Stevens Avenue in Solana Beach. The Solana Beach School District partners with Casa de Amistad in both the Summer Enrichment Program and the CBET program. Representatives from Casa de Amistad actively participate in the Solana Beach Education Coalition.
Casa de Amistad relies on funding from private foundations, community organizations, churches and individuals. Among its supporters are SBPC’s Hispanic Ministries, the Parker Foundation, the Rotary Club of Del Mar, and the Pfizer Foundation. For a full list of Casa’s Community Partners, click on the Community Partners link under About Us.
Volunteer mentors are being recruited for the current school year. For more information, please call Program Coordinator Deanna Wolf at (858) 509-2590 or e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Phase 1 of the Casa de Amistad facility was dedicated in May, 2002. Phase 1 includes a community room and a resource center which is directed at improving literacy. Phase 2 was complete in the fall of 2005 and includes a state-of-the-art technology center and administrative offices. The completion of the technology center has opened up training opportunities for both children and adults.