Each year every Agros community undergoes a period of planning. This is a participatory process in which community members gather and, with the help of Agros staff, decide which goals to strive towards as a community. Following is the new community plan developed for Bella Vista, Honduras, organized to align with the main components of the Agros model. (The full village plan is attached to this report.)
Overview Goal: To help 32 families sustainably move out of poverty.
Goal 1: Families have diversified their crops and improved their competencies and skills to manage climate and market risks.
Goal 1: Families develop financial and organizational competencies.
COMMUNITY HEALTH AND WELL-BEING
Goal 1: Families reduce the incidence of preventable diseases in kids younger than 2 years old, and pregnant and lactating mothers.
Goal 2: The community coordinates with governmental organizations responsible for health, nutrition and safety.
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In order for donors to Agros villages to get a better sense of the impact they are having on the lives of people there, we periodically lead groups on vision or service trips. On these trips, the groups spend time with community members, hearing their stories and often participating in the daily life of families.
One recent trip was a Women’s Vision Trip, made up of a group of women who support communities in Nicaragua, or who are exploring ways to support them. Our colleague, Emily, led the trip, and it was her first time to see the newest village, Tierra Nueva, which is home to 150 families (about 750 people). Here are a few of her comments:
Now I know what all of the fuss has been about with this Tierra Nueva place! Wow. It is amazing! I didn’t want to leave. As we drove in this morning, Oscar (our bus driver) pointed out where the property line started and soon to our right we saw San Benito on the hill across the valley and moments later pulled into Las Cuarenta. It felt like the combination of all of the good things I have seen throughout other Agros villages blended into one community. The gardens stood out to me right away – what care families have taken to decorate their property – it showed to me dignity and pride in where they live.
Our first stop was Carmen’s home, a short and gorgeous walk up the path from the school past multiple homes with gardens that were drawing me in, asking me to sit and be and have a cup of coffee – I wished that I had time to do just that in every home with every person I saw but no, not today and so I carried on to the home of someone I will now admire forever. Carmen is a health promoter in Tierra Nueva and lights up a room! Her eyes are wide and bright, and with dimples deep she smiled with pride telling us about her children and her work as a health promoter and her role as the VP of the community board, and the list goes on. Her care for the people of her community is outstanding and extends beyond what she signed up for because she can’t stop caring and serving and advocating for those that don’t yet know how to do so for themselves. What a rock.
The people who live in Agros communities are incredibly inspiring. Thank you for being a part of their lives through your generous support.
Learn more about the impact Agros is making in Honduras by visiting agros.org.
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Lucinda not only single-handedly runs the family farm, she is also a community leader, a caregiver to her children and elderly husband, and the community health worker for her village.
Lucinda and her husband, Don Tito (Jose T. Ortez), dreamed of owning land to be able to work their way out of poverty. They had rented farmland to grow food for their family, but there was never enough money to purchase their own land and build a secure future. Lucinda and Don were excited to be among the first members of the Agros village Piedra de Horeb, Honduras. However, shortly afterarriving, Don Tito’s health prevented him from working their fields. While many speculated they would lose their land, Lucinda has ensured that won’t happen.
At a remarkable 60 years of age, Lucinda is motivated to pay off her land, and works hard to see that her crops yield good harvests. She has been one of the most active members of the Field School training group for plantain production, and she has successfully applied the training to her own plantain crops. On top of all of these responsibilities, Lucinda is an example to her peers of what is possible through hard work, training and perseverance, and gives back to her community by serving as the secretary of the Community Board of Directors and a facilitator for adult literacy classes.
She has earned the respect and admiration of her community, which sees her as an example of all that one can accomplish.
Your gift is powerful in the lives of so many people like Lucinda and Don Tito. Without your support, this kind of empowerment would not be possible. On behalf of Lucinda and all of our Agros communities, thank you for your faithful support.