NCA 3rd Annual Graduation Ceremony

On Saturday, the 15th of July, NCA held its 3rd annual graduation ceremony.  In the past, we have held these ceremonies at our office in Chapala, however this year, the event was held at the Ramon Corona school in Chapala.

Local luminaries, including Chapala Presidente Municipal Javier Degollado González and Presidenta del DIF, Elizabeth Genoveva Guzmán Pérez, joined parents, sponsors, NCA staff and Board in the Graduation Celebration.  The event recognized students who had successfully completed Pre-School, Primary, Middle School, High School and University-level studies.

Guest speaker Mtro. Carlos Ramiro Quintero Montaño, Supervisor of Technical Secondary Schools, Zone 5, praised graduates’ achievements and encouraged them to take advantage of community support for academic success.  Our newly minted University of Guadalajara Law School graduate thanked parents and sponsors.

NCA Educational Consultant Mtra. Cony Larios once again masterfully served as Mistress of Ceremony.  The Ballet Foklórico Macehuani, from host schools Ramón Corona and Basilio Vadillo, delighted the crowd with dances from Chihuahua and Jalisco.  The event ended with a graduation cake and piñata.

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Presbyterian – NCA Outreach Program

NCA’s first collaborative project is with the Presbyterian church in Riberas del Pilar.  This initiative was started by NCA’s former Secretary Amy Friend and our Past President Bill Friend.  Bill and Amy have been attending services at the church for many years.

The Presbyterian church as two congregations, with services in Spanish and English.  NCA worked with Pastors Ross Arnold and Guillermo Pérez-Banuet Zamora to put this collaborative project together.

Pastor Guillermo worked with his Spanish speaking congregation to put together a group of students whose families are in a difficult financial situation, and who need the sponsorship help in order to be able to stay in school.  He provided this list of students to our team who interviewed the families of these students.

Last Sunday the 4th of December, following Pastor Ross’ service, I made a presentation to the English congregation, explaining:
  • Who NCA is,
  • our low overhead level (95% of donations go direct to the students) and fundraising activities,
  • how we provide verification of students & families entering our program as well as ongoing verification of student’s performance in school,
  • and our goal to see students from whatever grade they are entering our program through to graduation.
Immediately following the presentation, we had seven students sponsored, the most ever in one day!  We also had interest expressed by many for sponsoring students that live close to where they live, and interest in following up later with other sponsorships, so there may be more to come.

NCA 2016 AGM

NCA wil be holding its AGM at 2:00 on the 2nd of March.  The meeting is scheduled for 2:00 pm, with registration starting at 1:30.

AGENDA for NCA AGM, March 2, 2016


  • Determination of Quorum
  • Call for new meeting if no Quorum present
  • Directors’ Reports
  • Financial Report for 2015
  • Presentation of 2016 Budget
  • Election of Board of Directors for 2016
  • Presentation of Slate
  • Call for nominations from the floor
  • Election
  • New business
  • Designation of a delegate to present the AGM Minutes for protocolization by a Notary
  • Adjournment


English Language Classes Posada

NCA English Language Classes
NCA’s Volunteer English Language Teachers, students, and board members.

On Saturday, the 12th of December, NCA held a posada at our chapala office to celebrate our volunteer teachers and students who take English Language classes in the computer lab at our Chapala office.

Tamales and Atoles we served to all in attendance.  The NCA board would like to express a big thank-you to Lilia and Karla who put together the Posada.

NCA Quarterly Newsletter – December 2015

2015-Apple-Round-TextYour NCA Board has been busy with a flurry of wide-ranging activities. One continuing incentive has been to increase our public profile, and the positive fallout from this becomes increasingly evident. The local press, El OJO del Lago and The Guadalajara Reporter, feature our organization at least twice monthly, with various news articles and photos plus the “Student of the Month” column. In particular, these serve our central purpose, attracting new sponsors to support our wonderful students and keep them in school. New sponsors now step up spontaneously every week.

Holiday Hours

The NCA office will be closed for the holidays.  The office will be closing on  Friday Dec. 25th and reopen Monday Jan. 4.  There will be no English classes on the two Saturdays during the holidays.

NCA Brochure

The NCA brochure is in need of updating. Director of Events, Shannon Blair and Secretary, Amy Friend are tasked with this initiative. The amended text will be submitted to the Webmaster, Doug Friend, for integration with our new logo and fresh artwork.


Celebration of Mexico

NCA conducted its second Celebration of Mexico at Agustin Vasquez Calvario’s Restaurant Viva Mexico Tia Lupita in San Juan Cosala on Saturday, August 25, 3-7 p.m.
A lavish buffet of iconic Mexican dishes was offered. Guests enjoyed live entertainment, highlighted by area musicians and singers exhibiting a sampling of the Republic’s traditional songs, plus a few from the US.
All proceeds from the event will support NCA and the hundreds of gifted students who continue their education through the generosity of supporters.

The East Indian Dinner Event was a great success. We thank all our sponsors and friends for their attendance and support! The garden was filled with lots of laughter and conversation as our guests enjoyed the scrumptious meal prepared by NCA Board members and volunteers. Every dish was truly worthy of a 5-star restaurant. And the Margaritas were to die for. Who knew there was so much culinary talent in our midst!
By popular request this will become an annual event, so if you missed it this year, be sure to get your tickets early for next year’s event. The event made approximately $20,694.00 pesos profit.

On the initiative of Nancy Allan, Treasurer, NCA will host a modest Posada December 12, to honour the five volunteer English teachers and 20 students involved with NCA’s English classes program. Tamales and Atoles: should be fun for all!

Web Developments

NCA has a New FaceBook page! Please “friend” and “like us” at

The page is maintained by Director and Webmaster, Doug Friend, and will be regularly updated with NCA news and upcoming events.

Past “Student of the Month” columns were requested from the OJO and forwarded to the Webmaster and have been integrated into our website.

Each Board member will review the NCA website monthly, and forward any suggested updates to the Webmaster.  Kenia and Carla, our wonderful office staff, are also involved in this activity.

Director at Large, Nicole Belinne, is collating the Quarterly Newsletters, to which all NCA board members will regularly contribute.

Note: Check out the last posted Minutes (Nov 3, 2015) for full details!

You can view your student’s account on the website via your personal password. Please Note: new office hours are 3:00 pm – 6:00 pm. Telephone remains unchanged (376) 765-7032, where you can talk to Kenia.


Despite a quiet summer at the bazaar, with average monthly sales between $8,000 -$11,000 pesos a month, high season has arrived! Sales and donations are picking up and the staff is getting ready for the holidays. Please consider NCA when making donations and keep in mind that we offer an economical 20% fee on major consignments.

We will be printing a new large banner for the Bazaar that will be in tune with our new logo, font, and tag line “For the Love of Education”.  The sign will be back-lit at night, and should draw the attention of passing motorists.

Recruitment Updates

In September, Mtra. Cony Larios and Director at Large, Susan Johnson visited Lakeside Presbyterian Church to deliver mugs and pens to Pastor Ross and Pastor Guillermo in appreciation for the Church´s generous support for students through NCA. They also discussed possible dates for performances by the folkloric dance group Macehuani from public school Primaria Ramón Corona.

Director at Large, Susan Johnson, organized and served as Mistress of Ceremonies for a performance by the folkloric dance group Macehuani group at St Andrew´s Anglican Church for the celebration of Mexican Independence.
NCA Student Liaison Lilia Quezada, presented Father Winston Welty with an NCA mug and pen in recognition of the support provided by the church. She also explained the mission of NCA to keep more students in school by recruiting new sponsors.

In response to an invitation by Ajijic Rotary, NCA Director at Large Susan Johnson is coordinating and will serve as Mistress of Ceremonies with School Zone Supervisor Mtra. Cony Larios, for a presentation by the folkloric dance group Macehuani from public primary school Ramón Corona. Student Liaison Lilia Quezada will explain the mission of NCA during the December 8th program at the Real de Chapala.

Susan Johnson, Director at Large, and Student Liaison, Kenia Sánchez, were presenters at the Lake Chapala Society´s First Annual Scholarship Summit on November 11, 2015. The purpose of the summit was to share information in order to establish communication and collaboration.

Vice-president, Dr. Tim Whiting, and Director at Large, Susan Johnson, represented NCA at the Lake Chapala Society´s 60th Anniversary Celebration on November 7th. NCA is tentatively scheduled to be present at LCS the 2nd Wed of every month, starting December 9, 2015.

NCA Drop Box at the American Legion

American Legion Post 7 Commander Timothy Stern and Lori Skoda, Niños de Chapala and Ajijic Bazaar Director seal their agreement to place a donation drop box in Chapala Post 7.
American Legion Post 7 Commander Timothy Stern and Lori Skoda, Niños de Chapala and Ajijic Bazaar Director seal their agreement to place a donation drop box in Chapala Post 7.

There’s something new in the American Legion Post 7 in Chapala. After the Legion Board agreed to install a large donation “drop box” to help support NCA (Los Niños de Chapala y Ajijic). Items collected in the drop box will be sold at the NCA Bazaar in Riberas del Pilar, with those earnings directed to supporting NCA office expenses and NCA student scholarships.

This education-based charity is honored to join the lengthy list of the American Legion’s activities and charitable events. Some of the group’s dinners, parties and events raise money to help those who have served their country, others are scheduled to earn money to help the Lakeside community.

NCA has a history of serving Lakeside youth since 1970, and has made it possible for several thousand disadvantaged but gifted Mexican students to remain in school.

Alumni of the NCA program are now lawyers, doctors, accountants, marine biologists, teachers and engineers. Each year the number of students NCA is able to assist increases. Without increasing community support, it is highly unlikely that many of the outstanding young people currently in the program could have dreamed of a better future, and achieving their potential.

It isn’t enough for NCA-sponsored students to be accepted into the program. The students and their parents agree to meet periodically with NCA staff to ascertain their need and their family support. Plus, students must maintain a grade average of 80% or better to remain within the program. Many work hard enough to consistently score in the 100% range.

The linking of the Legion and NCA, two energetic, pro-active organizations with the welfare of all Lakesiders at heart, looks as if it could be a perfect match. The American Legion has made important monthly contributions to NCA for many years. Now these groups are working together, striving to leave things better than they found them, and to give back to Mexico in important ways while working to help transform the lives of those they serve.

The success of NCA, lakeside’s oldest charity, owes much to the Legion’s generosity. The power of giving back and of paying forward is awesome, it has sometimes been described as “The Power of One.” Some wonder: what difference just one person can make.

A glance at the Legion and NCA activities, many of which are created and carried out by a small group of individuals, shows that individual acts of kindness and compassion can be life-changing, and can make a genuine and lasting difference.

Visit NCA’s website at for more information on how to become part of this initiative.  Sponsorship costs less than most lakesiders think. Inevitably NCA sponsors are soon telling others, “My student makes me so proud.”

Local shoppers can help by visiting the NCA Bazaar directly across from the Seven-11 on the Carretera in Riberas del Pilar to buy some of the one-of-a-kind treasures in this shop’s boutique atmosphere. Area residents can place valuable items priced at 1000 pesos or more in the store on consignment. Then 20 percent of the sales price will go to NCA

American Legion Post 7 urges both veterans of all nationalities and non-veterans to visit and enjoy the many great meals and special events at the Post. For additional information , contact Commander Tim Stern via email: or  Adjutant Vince Britton at

A Celebration of Mexico 2015

A Celebration of MexicoPlease join us for our second annual Celebration of Mexico at Chef Augustine’s fabulous Viva Mexico in San Juan Cosalá.  Chef Augustine will again prepare a scrumptious buffet for you to enjoy, and we will have live entertainment, feature traditional Mexican Ballet Folklorico.

Tickets are still only $250 Pesos, and all proceeds from the event of course go to support NCA and our gifted students.  Tickets will be available at NCA’s Bazaar in Riberas del Pilar (across from the 7-11), or call our wonderful Events Coordinator Shannon at (331) 695-6422.  See you there!


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