Professional & Work Development Programs

Safe Passage believes that young adults are key figures for social change

To support students in our community as they transition into higher levels of education and life, we created Oportunidades and Próximo Paso, our half-day reinforcement and next step graduate programs.

Our Oportunidades program is for students who attend public and private high schools. The first class of Camino Seguro students will be joining the program in 2022, when they move on to Diversificado (high school).

Próximo Paso or our “Next Step” program is for students who have graduated high school – we assist these students in a variety of ways depending on their interests and needs, including with applications for university.


Oportunidades - half-day reinforcement program

It began as the Educational Reinforcement Center (CRE) in 2000 and was created to help students, ages 8-20, who studied in other institutions.

With Guatemalan schools only operating for four hours a day, there is a need to keep students engaged academically, off of the streets and away from the influence of gangs. The program transitioned to Oportunidades in 2018 in an effort to give students more autonomy and responsibility in their education. Specific protocols to assist staff and volunteers were also implemented, such as physical and virtual file keeping to gain a better understanding of the skills and realities of the students.

Próximo Paso - Next Step graduate program

Next Step helps guide students as they leave high school and transition into either university or the workforce.

With the observation that lack of social skills and adaptation were interfering with employment opportunities, Próximo Paso was created to help students successfully navigate the next stage of their lives. What began as workshops and etiquette classes, transformed into a robust program that includes:

  • Educational and vocational orientation for students 9th grade   and up
  • Academic growth opportunities and support when applying for  and entering university
  • Support and placement with internships and employment opportunities

We started the program to guide graduates through the often daunting post-graduation world by giving them:

  • Real-world experience and employment opportunities.
    We start by working closely and fostering professional relationships with nonprofit organizations and private companies. The more they understand and experience our programs, the more likely it is that they will work with our graduates. Our local Guatemalan partners provide training and employment for many of our graduates. Partner volunteers donate their time to strengthening student social skills and offering advice and encouragement.
  • Help with researching universities and applications.
    Graduates that want to continue their education after high school receive guidance and support throughout the university admissions process.
  • Knowledge to find his/her space in society and creating post-graduation goals.
    Through interview preparation workshops, alumni activities, and resources for finding employment, Next Step gives graduates the skills they need to make informed decisions about their future.

Next Step is the culmination of our comprehensive education program, and a new beginning for each of our graduates. 

159 high school students have graduated from Safe Passage since 2007, but where are they now? To find out, we conducted a survey in fall of 2016 that was updated in 2020. Of the 75% of graduates who responded:

57% are currently employed in the formal sector

9% are currently working and enrolled in higher education

Of those who reported wages, the average monthly wage is Q3,500 ($467) The average monthly wage for a worker in the garbage dump is Q1000 ($133)

You make student progress possible.

Join our Community

When you make a donation, join a Support Team, sponsor a child, organize an event or volunteer in Guatemala, you help a top rated school empower people and change lives in one of the poorest places on earth.


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Spend one week of service learning at our program in Guatemala

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Contact Us

We invite you to reach out to our U.S. office in New Gloucester, Maine and our program site in Guatemala City


49 Farm View Dr
Raymond Hall, Suite 302
New Gloucester, ME 04260

9am - 5pm (EST)

TEL (207) 846-1188
FAX (207) 926-8244


6a. Avenida 11-95 Zona 7
Colonia Landivar, Ciudad de Guatemala

8am - 5pm (GMT)

TEL (502) 2440-4388