We want to celebrate the successes that were made possible thanks to YOU in 2016! There are many families that are healthier, happier and living better lives thanks to your generosity. Here are a few of the important highlights that were made possible by you.
Nicaragua is one of the poorest countries in the Western hemisphere. Minimum wage is barely $170 per month—with 48-hour workweeks. Thanks to your help, youth in Matagalpa have hope for their future. Your funding has supported computer training which has allowed youth to access college majors and job prospects they may not have otherwise. Thank you!
Forty-nine students graduated on Thursday, October 6, from the Computer Training Program run by CEPAD in Matagalpa. The training program consisted of over 120 hours of hands-on coursework. The courses were taught by professors from local universities, and were made available to everyone with an interest in learning more about computers. The program has graduated over 270 students over the past five years.
Pedro and Yanira used to have to carry water for their family, their crops and their animals. Every villager in Sompompera struggled after wells dried up due to a prolonged drought. After your support for training, village leaders ran over 5 mile of pipes to bring water from a mountain spring. Life is now different in Sompopera, all thanks to you.
For the last 30 years, Pedro Herrera has farmed his land in the mountains of Pantasma, in the northern region of Nicaragua. His large mustache parts to reveal a set of silver-plated teeth as he greets us at his porch. “People from CEPAD are always welcome at my house,” he says.
Resting on a hand built reclining bench sits Rodolfo Pineda and his young daughter Katherin. A young boy races past the porch lined with flowering plants. The front of Rodolfo’s house is a little “pulperia”, a local name given to a small store with daily need items.
Rodolfo greets us warmly and explains he was part of the CEPAD program during the previous five-year cycle in his community, Sompopera. Though the work that you made possible is officially over, he and the other community leaders continue to work together to improve their community. Rodolfo is eloquent and talkative. He immediately begins sharing about his five-year experience with CEPAD. All the benefits Rodolfo has for his family were provided by you. This is just one family in one town, your gifts make similar things possible for families all over Nicaragua. The following is a transcript of what he said:
PC(USA) Mission Co-Worker, Justin Sundberg, serving with CEPAD, reflects on the word that he feels best summarizes the work of the organization and asks you to reflect as well.
by Justin Sundberg
In Jinotepe, to the south of Managua, CEPAD has worked for 8 months in the community of, “Los Encuentros” (the Meeting Crossroads). When I visited there last month, I left nearly ecstatic considering its future after meetings its CEPAD-trained leaders.
During my encounter in Los Encuentros, leaders described what they had been learning. One woman, Glorieta, rushed in late to our meeting. She had not personally been to any of our trainings, but a friend of Glorieta, trained by CEPAD, had trained her. Glorieta was beaming as she pulled necklaces, bracelets and earrings from her pockets. In Spanish, she burst, “He ideado unos!” In English, her statement could be rendered, “I’ve created some of my own unique designs,” shared modestly, but proudly.
After driving out of Teustepe, (a town in Northern Nicaragua), for 45 minutes on a rocky path and crossing a couple dry rivers, we finally arrived in the small, dusty village of Agua Caliente. The landscape looks bleak due to the past two years of drought. A few underdeveloped crop fields are visible through the breaks in the trees.
Two small boys were among the first to run up to the pick up truck to greet us. Jose and Joan were soon met by more children who walked with us to the small unpainted quarry block house.
Come in to see our chancha!” Oscar and his older brother Witer ran ahead of us as their mother excitedly invited us into their house to see their large pig which had recently given birth to 12 piglets.
We followed, expecting to walk out the back door after entering the house, but the two brothers turned into the small, smoke-filled kitchen. There she was, their pride and joy, snout to the hard dirt floor, hunting for food with her 12 little pink piglets.
For Sugeyli, this family of pigs living in her kitchen eases her worry about her sons not having enough to eat. These pigs give her hope for their future.
Thank you for your prayers, donations and accompaniment of rural villages in 2015. You have truly made a difference for so many. Our staff have a special message to thank YOU for your support.