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Mona

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El Porvenir
February 17, 2011

My work with organizations in Nicaragua allowed me to meet staff of El Porvenir about five years ago as we compared notes on efforts to bring water to the tiny houses of families living along a ridge served by a seven mile long mud/dust road. Most impressive was the staff’s personal dedication to the families they served. This was not some huge organization which swooped in and threw money at a project to help the “poor people in some impoverished land.”

Just a year ago my impressions were enhanced when I spent two days filming El Porvenir projects, on site in Nicaragua. I spent days riding with the project directors who worked directly with the families. They encouraged the people to tell their own stories of the changes in their lives.

They did not just have new latrines; they understood the detailed interaction of sanitation and its effects on the health, especially the health of their children. Not only the women, but also the men, understood the importance of stoves that used less firewood and even more important kept smoke from filling the house. We heard the thanks of women who washed clothes in a simple concrete sink near a well, instead of on a rock in a stream where they also bathed. Bath houses provided privacy close to the source of water and handled the run-off water without pollution.

They understood the importance of replanting trees to protect the land and the water supply and water allowed these tiny trees to flourish.

The sense of community evident in the villages where water systems now provided a faucet at each house, demonstrated the results of their work together to do the planning, the work involved in the self-help project, the classes in health and sanitation, and most of all the pride in their accomplishment.

El Porvenir has internalized all of the best practices of working with impoverished communities to achieve basic goals of heath and cooperation.

The Great!

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

I personally visited thier projects in Nicaragua, visiting with their staff members and many families with which they work. I saw the water systems, replanted forests, bath and laundry facitities and latrines. I experienced the sense of community shared by the families who cooperated in the actual labor necessary to impliment the projects.

Ways to make it better...

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

I can not think of any changes, except to somehow allow more people to know about the effectiveness of thier work.

More feedback

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

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?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

MY ROLE:
Volunteer & I filmed El Porvenir projects, visited staff in Nicaragua, and help with some publicity.

Review from Guidestar