On 6th April 2011, La Riojana donated a computer, printer and a voltage stabiliser to the "Amor y Esperanza" school in Chilecito, the Argentine town where La Riojana's main winery is located. This donation was funded by the Fairtrade Premium that La Riojana receives from the Fairtrade Labelling Organisation (FLO) for the sales of Fairtrade certified wines it produces.
The "Amor y Esperanza" school, meaning "Love and Hope" in English, is a special needs school run by the state in Chilecito, which was founded over 24 years ago. In total it looks after 97 pupils with multiple disabilities, such as Downs Syndrome, blindness, deafness and brain damage.
The majority of children who attend this school come from under priviledged families with few financial resources. They are offered education from nursery age to the 3rd grade, equivalent to the level of education given to children aged 8 – 9 years old. Following on from the 3rd grade, they are offered education in manual arts, such as carpentry. The pupils are taught to read, write, and talk, and in the case of the deaf they are taught sign language and in the case of the blind they are taught Braile.
In addition to specialist teachers who look after the different needs of the pupils, the school has a department of dedicated professionals, including an occupational therapist, a psychologist, a speech and language therapist, an educational phychologist and phycotherapist, who help diagnose the pupils' problems on entry the school, their learning ability, and indicate treatments or practices that will help the individual pupils integrate socially to their best ability.
The professional staff that work at the school will be able to use the computer and printer that have been kindly donated by La Riojana to prepare assessment reports on the pupils, to diagnose the individual children, prepare educational material, and use the internet for research.