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Self-Help International

Rating: 5 stars   1 review 704


703 2nd Ave NW Waverly IA 50677 USA


We offer long-term solutions to global problems... not a quick fix. We commit to a country, a group of people and a set of projects until the recipients can stand by themselves. We are not a relief agency, which tends to meet temporary needs. Self-Help believes in teaching people “to fish” for their long-term benefit. Based in Waverly, Iowa, Self Help has offices in Nicaragua and Ghana.


We are creating and expanding training facilities in both Ghana and Nicaragua that teach young farming such as animal husbandry, and provide them with micro credit loans to start or grow their businesses. With knowledge and resources, farmers can stay in their rural areas instead of migrating to the large urban areas to find jobs that will support their families.

Target demographics:

alleviate hunger by helping those in need help themselves

Direct beneficiaries per year:

3,718 people

Geographic areas served:

Nicaragua and Ghana


Feeding program, Quality Protein Maize, Micro-Credit, Silos, Water-Chlorination

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Reviews for Self-Help International

Rating: 5 stars  

3 people found this review helpful

As an intern with Self Help International and after traveling to Ghana to see the work Self Help has done, I am grateful for the experience here. A rather small non-profit in terms of staff, this fact holds no weight when compared to the impact that I saw first-hand in Ghana. With hundreds of beneficiaries and thousands of dollars loaned out every period, to say Self Help impacts lives would be a bit of an understatement. These women are so grateful for the loans, because the loan opens doors for themselves, but also their families, that would otherwise not be afforded to them. Women are able to send their kids to school, build a new shop for their selling or cooking, and provide healthy meals for the children. Stories of success are common in Ghana and Nicaragua but Self Help does not stop there. They have tirelessly worked to receive grants to building training centers in Ghana and Nicaragua to teach more efficient farming techniques and provide educational classes in raising animals, crops, and other plants.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

a two-week trip to Ghana, meeting with the women that receive micro loans and listening to their stories.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

bring on more staff to expand operations to another country.

Would you volunteer for this group again?


For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?


When was your last experience with this nonprofit?


What one change could this group make that would improve your volunteer experience?

Nothing comes to mind, I have been able to do what I want and contribute in any way I see fit.

Did your volunteer experience have an effect on you? (teaching you a new skill, or introducing new friends, etc.)

Opened my eyes to life in Ghana and how appreciative and welcoming Ghanaians are. My time in Ghana was valuable in my growth as a professional but also as a human-being.

How did this volunteer experience make you feel?

I was encouraged to see how micro credit improves lives, despite all the criticism in the world.

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