My Nonprofit Reviews
Review for Opal House, Snohomish, WA, USA
My wife and I have just returned from our second visit to Opal House. We are so amazed at the work happening there in Guatemala. They are all in. Their only administration costs include the basics to live. All other income is directed towards the farm, school and helping the community.
Their 75 acre farm does take a lot of time and effort. I have seen a huge change since we were there last in 2012. They are tending it so that it will become sustainable and eventually support all the work that is happening on the property. It is completely organic, using composted trimmings to re-nourish the previously over used land. They have concentrated on the planting and growth of coffee and the re-establishment of their avocado grove. They have also planted many other varieties of fruit in hopes of providing a more balanced diet for the children in their schooling programs. They also employ several local men who are able to sustain their families well with their hard work.
Their school is small and growing. The students are young and the school is growing grade by grade as the oldest students move into new grades. The Montessori program is effective and creates leaders among the children. They have situated their school to take advantage of the wonderful view from their property. In a small way this shows the care that they have for their students by allowing them to enjoy nature. The children also get a share of the best that Opal house has to offer.
The two of them are also in the medical field. They work all year helping the poor. This work culminates with a week or two of free orthopedic surgery for children who benefit greatly from reconstructed limbs. Even this aspect of their work in Guatemala is growing as new specialists are making themselves available to provide services outside Will and Diane's specialties.
Will and Diane have shown themselves to be quick to help those around them but also wise so not to create a dependence in those they help. They want their neighbours to rise up and live a life of worth and value.
We have also had the privilege of meeting their core support in Seattle. They are all like minded. I have also noticed that any new individuals or organisations who encounter Will and Diane are quick to support them with enthusiast. In my case, I met Will very randomly in a lunch line in San Lucas Toliman (a small town close to their home.) In our short two hour conversation we became supporters and made our first trip to visit their property one year later.
They provide a wide variety of opportunities for volunteers. They welcome workers who can do physical labor and doctors with specialised training. Most anyone can be of help to Opal house. I recommend them to all. Their love and care is infectious.