Self-Help International

Self-Help International (SHI) devotes its efforts to alleviating world hunger and poverty by providing opportunities to rural citizens that ultimately lead to self-reliance. Since its inception, Self-Help has served as a vessel; training, education, and opportunities are provided to rural citizens and whole communities in developing countries so that they can have better lives. MISSION STATEMENT: To alleviate hunger by helping people help themselves. SELF-HELP'S INITIATIVE Educate: We educate the people of the United States to understand the problems of life in developing countries particularly the awareness of the perpetual struggle by millions to produce and distribute food to battle p...
Jun 3, 2014

Lydia makes progress

Lydia stands next to her new sewing machine
Lydia stands next to her new sewing machine

Lydia is 36 years old and has two daughters, ages 11 and 2 ½ years old. In 2010, she made the decision to join the Self-Help International micro credit program in Bedaabour. She had witnessed improvements in the lives of people who had joined the program when it first came to the village in 2008 and became convinced that the program could help her help herself.

Lydia completed seamstress apprenticeship in 2000 and started practicing thereafter. Ten years down the line, there was no sign of improvement in her finances. Bedaabour is a small community with fewer than 50 dresses sewn annually; most of which are sewn during Christmas. It was difficult caring for her only daughter, and earning additional income was a must. She took out a loan from SHI in order to expand her business to trading fabrics in addition to sewing them.

The sale of fabrics serves as a boost to her sewing business. Rather than people purchasing fabrics elsewhere and bringing the fabrics to Lydia to sew, they can now come to her to purchase the fabrics and have the clothing made all in one place. In 2013, she was able to invest in a new sewing machine. She saves part of her profit and re-invests the rest to expand her petty trading. With extra money earned, Lydia is able to provide her daughters with food, clothing and continued education.

Despite her new purchase, Lydia keeps her old sewing machine even though it no longer works because it helps her remember the past and how far she’s come.

Because of your support, Lydia and many women like her can find success and in the process provide better care for their families. Thank you for your donation.

Lydia selling her merchandise
Lydia selling her merchandise

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May 20, 2014

Water quality improved in four communities

CAPS leader Marcial Arce from Los Chiles
CAPS leader Marcial Arce from Los Chiles

In this first quarter of the year, Self-Help International has been conducting visits to each community where we have chlorinators installed with the purpose of providing technical support, advising, and assistance in order to keep the CT-8 chlorinators operating effectively and efficiently. Self-Help staff also went to several communities where no chlorinators, or any other type of water treatment, were yet installed to promote the CTI-8 chlorinators by means of technical presentation, chlorinator display, and discussions explaining the benefits of this technology.

During this time, Self-Help installed five new CTI-8 chlorinators in the following municipalities: Morrito, San Miguelito, San Carlos and El Castillo. Staff also distributed 260 chlorinator tablets to all of the communities that benefit from this program. Up until today we have installed 27 CTI-8 chlorinators and provided clean water to 28,278 people, preventing several kinds of preventable illnesses like diarrhea.  

In the communities where we have CTI-8 chlorinators installed, the people have shared with Self-Help International that they are really happy and thankful for the organization and its staff for providing the opportunity to improve water quality. Now they feel more confident when they drink the treated water. Also because SHI provides advising on how to avoid illnesses by taking actions such as using the chlorinated water to wash their hands after using the facilities, wash their hands before each time of meal, wash the dishes, wash the vagetables and fruits before using them and eating to prevent diahrrea, parasites, and renal infections. People in the community have said that their children look much healthier now that have access to clean water, rather than the raw water that comes from other water systems. They have noticed that the children don’t have diarrhea as often as before, so this program is having a great impact on the entire community.  

In January SHI also got the results of the water analysis the was done last year at the beginning of December. In the featured photos, you will see some of the CAPS members, MINSA (Health Department), and other leaders from each community that came to the Fred Strohbehn Training Center to learn about the status of the quality of their drinking water.

Self-Help staff is also planning to meet with the mayor from San Miguelito to discuss outreach. With her guidance SHI can reach more communities and people that are still thinking about getting the CTI-8 technology for their use. It may take some time for us to do so but our next goal is to work along with the mayor of each municipality, as some CAPS don’t have the technology due to the lack of money. If they get monetary support from their mayors, it may be easier for them to convince themselves that the program is good for them. So far some of them are questioning it, as they don’t want to pay for something that may not be good for them.

Your support has provided these communities with an opportunity to take ownership over their town's water quality and impove the health of their families and neighbors. Thank you for your generous donation.

Training and presentations at training center
Training and presentations at training center
CAPS members from Cruz Verde
CAPS members from Cruz Verde
Hygentist Carlos learning about new technology
Hygentist Carlos learning about new technology

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May 2, 2014

Local students visit training center

Junior high students visit training center
Junior high students visit training center

In March, students and staff from Toase Roman Catholic Junior High School paid a two-day educational visit to the Frances Mueller and Virginia Lageschulte Young People's Training Center in Ghana.

SHI Training Center Manager, Justice, explained projects and training programs to visiting students. They learned about the mushroom growing program including the development of compost for mushrooms. Students also learned about the production, care and management of snails, rabbits, grass cutters and poultry.

In all 35 students (17 females and 18 males) and three teachers (two males and one female) visited the center.

Your generous support provides new educational experiences and training for current and future students from Toase Junior High School and other schools like it. Thank you for your donation.

Students learn about composting
Students learn about composting
Justice, center manager, speaks to students.
Justice, center manager, speaks to students.

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