For the most part, RECREO is funded by Fuerza Publica officers who go out-of-pocket for this noble cause. Some help is provided by the private business sector in the sense of offering bulk discounts for the school supplies. The San Jose communities wherein the benefited grade school students live include some of the most troubled working-class neighborhoods such as La Carpio and some districts in Hatillo.
Statistics from the Ministry of Public Education (Spanish initials: MEP) in Costa Rica indicate that a lack of school supplies can contribute to dropout rates in primary schools. The MEP tries to provide some basic school supplies such as notebooks and pencils to the neediest students, who increasingly make up the bulk of the student body due to the deteriorating economic environment in Costa Rica. In the past, MEP officials did not have to provide as many free supplies to students as they do now, and their budget has not been properly adjusted to meet the needs of students from low-income families.
In Costa Rica, the RECREO program has extended beyond the San Jose metropolitan area and into rural areas. The photographs that accompany this article were recently taken in San Pablo, in the canton of Turrubares, right on the provincial border between San Jose and Puntarenas. The arrival of Fuerza Publica officers in a couple of schools in this remote community was not expected by children, many of whom lacked not only school supplies but also uniforms. It was an emotional surprise for some of the students, who accepted the donations with tears of joy.
Source: Fuerza Publica press release CP-0187-2015