At last! Thanks to several private donations, and support from the community, construction has begun again.

Finca La Maya, a Cultural Arts & Events Center near San Carlos, is able to continue building a new community library. Construction was started last year, but lack of funds forced all work to stop last February. Since then, many efforts have been made to persuade local residents and businesses to contribute to the library in the form of grants or donations. The challenge for investment had a frustrating lack of results, until just recently.

Individual donations and contributions from several local business sponsors has put the dream of a community library back into the realm of possibilities. Members of the American Society of Panama also voted to invest their support.

Chef Pascal Finet of Terrazzas del Mar restaurant in Vista Mar, and the Bay View Restaurant in El Palmar have both become sponsors for Community Programs at La Maya. “Social and educational programs are in the best interest of everyone in our community. We are happy to contribute” said Hector Golcher manager of the Bay View. (Golcher is a candidate for mayor in the district of San Carlos.) Local residents, including Michael Poirier of “Mailboxes Etc.” in Coronado donate personal time and labor to community activities at La Maya. Several donations have also been received from private individuals who have asked to remain anonymous.

Finca La Maya is hopeful for approval of grants from other well-respected charity organizations in Panama. Funds from their investment will be used to purchase building materials and labor to complete walls, install windows, doors, light fixtures, tile, shelving for books, and tables and chairs. The library will provide an important learning and reference resource for the entire community, with the addition of computer equipment and classes also planned for the future.

The new library will be located next to the classroom facility completed last year at La Maya, where free community programs take place on Saturdays. An English language and an “Art for Kids” class are offered weekly. Several months ago “Family Movie Night” was added, offering free family entertainment on the first Saturday evenings of every month.

Up to one hundred participants have attended the weekly community programs at La Maya, coming from Panama’s Pacific coast interior communities as far away as Chorrera and Rio Hato. One student’s application was finally accepted
to the university in Penenome because of his progress in La Maya’s English classes.
Finca La Maya’s goal is to enhance education and cultural opportunities for local Panamanians. For more information or to make a donation, please visit our website at www.fincalamaya.com, and the Community Programs link.

For those who live in Panama City, contributions can also be with the “BUY A BOOK, BUILD A LIBRARY” program. Books purchased Exedra Books can be donated to the library in San Carlos. La Maya will pick up donated books.

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Finca La Maya is located on fifteen scenic hectares an hour from Panama City and minutes from spectacular Pacific coast beaches.
The 500 square meter light-filled Arts Center is versatile – providing numerous areas for meetings, workshops, art courses, yoga, or group activities. Outdoor studios are suitable for construction, ceramic, or sculpture projects. The facilities are available for instructors of any kind to bring small groups for deeper investigation of whatever disciplines they teach: painting, photography, yoga, holistic medicine, or other types of activities. La Maya welcomes course or session proposals from private groups and professionals. Please inquire for details. For more information and directions to Finca La Maya, visit: www.fincalamaya.com. Locals in Panama call: (507) 240-8281. From the USA call: (901) 414-2844