How the Church is improving educational opportunities around the world

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints provides hundreds of volunteer hours and donations to schools around the world

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has a history of providing service to others regardless of where people live or what the circumstance might be. In 2022, the Church donated more than “$1 billion in expenditures, 6.3 million hours volunteered and 3,692 humanitarian projects in 190 different countries and territories” to help care for those in need.

The ongoing initiative to live the two great commandments — “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God” and “thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself” (see Matthew 22:36-40) — has continued in 2023. 

Students at a donation ceremony in Cahabón, Guatemala, April 21, 2023. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

“As His followers, we seek to love God and our neighbors throughout the world,” the First Presidency said in a letter to members of the Church. “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is eager to bless others and to help those in need. We are blessed to have the ability, resources and trusted global connections to carry out this sacred responsibility, which we consider a joyful privilege.”

As part of its ongoing initiative to support education worldwide, the Church has been involved in donating hundreds of supplies and volunteer hours to help give greater educational opportunities.

Here are some stories of recent education donations from the Church around the world.

Young Latter-day Saints make school supply kits in Argentina

During Church-sponsored summer camps, nearly 7,000 high school-age Latter-day Saints in Argentina put together more than 23,000 school supply kits for children in need. When interviewing those who helped, one volunteer talked about how helping others brought them closer to Jesus Christ. 

Kits improve attendance because children who lack supplies often drop out of school, reported the Church’s Spanish-language Newsroom.

Latter-day Saint volunteers in Kilgrumon, Cordoba, Argentina, pick out items to put into each school kit that will be donated to needy students in January 2023. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Helping disadvantaged in Mexico

Working to reach disadvantaged areas in Mexico, the Church organized humanitarian efforts that benefited over 11,000 students. 

In December 2022, the Church’s Mexico Newsroom reported that “122 computers, printers and equipment to connect to the internet” were donated to various public schools; and a donation of 132 computers was given to UNICEF Mexico. 

The donated equipment will benefit high school students in all areas of their education — physics, chemistry, mathematics, communications and English.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints made donations of technological equipment to groups that work to improve educational opportunities for students in disadvantaged areas of Mexico in December 2022. | Provided by UNETE AC

Lifting up schools in Guatemala

The Church donated enough school furnishings to benefit 19 schools in Guatemala. Many of the schools in the area are returning to in-person classes after being online from COVID-19. A local latter-day Saint leader said, “We hope that this furniture is a blessing for the children and that it supports their educational formation so that they can have a better future.”

Desks donated by the Church of Jesus Christ benefited more than 1,700 students in Cahabón. Guatemala, April 21, 2023. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Furnishings donated — 886 desks, 140 small chairs, 70 two-person tables, 70 chair-type desks, 70 chairs and 20 blackboards — were given to the schools within two months.

“Latter-day Saints believe that education is a divine endeavor that helps build communities,” the Church’s Spanish-language Newsroom reported. “The Church provides many self-reliance and educational resources to any who desire it, as all are children of God.”

Students and volunteers at the delivery to Juan Veliz Juárez Mixed Urban Official School, April 21, 2023. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Hearts of gratitude in the Philippines

Bicol University in Legazpi City, Philippines, received donations of multimedia projectors, laptops, photocopy machines, calculators, a smart TV and an ELMO document camera from the Church in a ceremony held in the Legazpi Philippines Stake Center. Bicol University officials attended the event and expressed appreciation for the donations.

Juliet Borres, Bicol University vice president for academic affairs, spoke at the event. “Our hearts are full of gratitude,” she said. “I hope that this kind of partnership and gesture of generosity from this noble Church will continue in the future. We will always welcome further support, as the presentation indicated, the best is yet to come.”

Various distinguished guests and university officials at a donation ceremony held at the Legazpi Philippines Stake Center, May 2, 2023. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Hearts full in Manila

Supplies given to the Amelia Heights Elementary School in Olongapo City, Manila, Philippines, were considered “a life-changing gift.” The Church provided much-needed materials to the school in order to build better quality comfort rooms and wash areas for the children attending. 

But the donations went beyond just improving the physical condition of the elementary school. Also provided were additional educational materials that will allow the school to “better the skills and to fill the learning gaps and losses of our learners,” said Marciel L. Andrade, the school’s principal.

“It was an answered prayer,” said Andrade of the donations. “Amelia Heights Elementary is so blessed that our dream to give the best facilities and services to our learners will now come to reality.” She continued, “When [representatives from] The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints visited our school, I knew all along that dreams do come true.”

The turnover ceremony held at the Cabalan meetinghouse, March 23, 2023. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Andrade was accompanied by fellow teachers and the school PTA president when accepting the Church’s donations at the Cabalan meetinghouse. She said, “God is so good, and our hearts are full.”

The City Schools Division superintendent, Leilani S. Cunanan, also expressed her appreciation for the donations. “Amelia Heights Elementary School is now standing on the shoulders of a giant because they can see better and farther through the assistance given them.”

Backpacks of hope in Micronesia

Starting in 2022, the Church began donating backpacks to elementary and middle school-age students. Approximately 700 backpacks were delivered to the Koror Elementary School and were filled with needed school supplies and personal notes from Church members.

Students in Peleliu, Palau, with donated backpacks from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The project began in 2022 and continued through April 2023. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

In 2023, the project grew from only including the Koror Elementary School to including schools on the islands of Peleliu and Palau. When receiving their pack, one of the children exclaimed, “I liked everything, but my favorite part was the note” found inside written by a Church member.

The Meynus Elementary School principal on Palau said: “The backpacks help them to feel important and taken care of. … I feel like when the children know that you believe in them, they begin to believe in themselves.”

Students in Palau with their new backpacks. The project began in 2022 and continued through April 2023. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
Related Stories
Education projects worldwide show a love for all of God’s children
9 ways the Church recently served people throughout Asia and Micronesia
Subscribe for free and get daily or weekly updates straight to your inbox
The three things you need to know everyday
Highlights from the last week to keep you informed