Why I Support CEPAD

Arlayne Knox shares why she supports CEPAD.

I first learned about CEPAD in 1984, on a Presbyterian Mission Study trip to Central America. My church (University Presbyterian, Fairbanks, Alaska) sent me with money to use where I saw the need. It was during the Iran-Contra Affair and we visited a displaced persons camp established by CEPAD near Somoto. They were building a storage building for the crops they had planted and were in ned of roofing materials. That is where a major portion of the money went.

Since that time, I have been receiving the CEPAD newsletter, and have supported them as I have been able to. I was excited to receive the invitation and opportunity to go to Managua for the 45th Anniversary Celebration in 2017.

It was an opportunity to hear from the people who have had their lives improved with the training by CEPAD (I was pleased to learn that the request must be made for CEPAD’s help by the villages before CEPAD starts work there). The Presbyterian Church has recently formally apologized to Alaska Native for the way they treated them – imposing the English language and culture on them – punishing the children for speaking their native language.

I appreciate how CEPAD gives feedback to donors on how their donations are used. Again in 2018, members from my church sent money to help after a hurricane devastated farmers’ crops. I was pleased to receive and share the picture of plants – growing from seeds provided by their donation.

CEPAD has made and continues to make a difference in the lives of many Nicaraguans – and in mine.