Ten years ago, with a group of friends we founded a nonprofit organization called Sumando Manos Foundation, because we believed that together we could make a change in our lives and the lives of other people.
10 years ago our organization was born, and everything happened very fast, from our first meeting where we discussed what to do and how, and more important, why we are doing it.
Today, looking in perspective and distance these 10 years, it's amazing that our idea, our dream became a reality and that we can help so many children in our country.
We are involved in various projects that help underprivileged children in remote zones of Argentina. The children we work walk bare foot between 5 and 8 km to go to school and consider themselves lucky if they get one meal a day. They live in villages were resources are limited and access to basic human needs such as drinkable water, electricity and medical care are not guaranteed.
Our organization works by leveraging and complementing each other’s talents. We seek to optimize what we have, those intangible assets that we have acquired through our personal and professional lives, and what we enjoy doing to give children a better quality of life.
But that experience also was built with what we learned from our failures.
The need and gaps we saw made us react urgently, and that was a mistake.
Children were dying due to malnutrition. We provided food for them, but they could not eat it because the conditions of their oral hygiene did not even allow them to chew. Working with our team and other nonprofit organizations, we were able to get dentists and physicians to come treat them, but the problems just kept on unfolding. We soon realized that there were parasites in the soil that the children, who lacked shoes, were being exposed to. So we provided shoes for them, but, even then, the children continued to die because they were also drinking contaminated water during their long walks from school back home and vice versa.
Finally, we were able to drill and provide safe, clean water for them to drink. Thanks to the continue efforts, in the last six years no child has died due to mal nutrition, parasites or contaminated water.
We learned that there is no short term or one time solution and there are realities that even we cannot imagine.
We learned about ourselves, we learned to listen more, to be more patient and compressive, so we can understand the specifics of each situation, in each place, and meet the people and their needs. This helped us a lot, especially to define how to work, as bond with each community, and with other organizations to provide assistance in an integrated manner, seeking long-term solutions to rural schools, feeding centers and foster homes, in remote locations our Argentina.
And we learned the difference between result and impact.
The other day I was asked about the difference between result and impact, and I think one way to describe it, is distinguishing between what represents for us the activity we do, and what change produces in the person who receives it.
For example, we conduct the campaign "For a child's breakfast" for schools in Chaco. From the perspective of the result, it could be measured by: obtaining the necessary funds, the bond with the people who help us reach that monthly food schools, etc. But when that food may be the only one receiving by the child in the day, when it becomes to school in the place of containment where kids go for the food and increase the attendance, and where children can receive education because they do not fall asleep because of the different levels of malnutrition, This is what we define as impact!
And we learned that giving is not giving what we do not need, but to share what we have.
There have been several stories and projects like this one in the history of our organization.
We started helping a foster home with 20 children, and today we have helped more than 10,000 children in more than 100 schools and their communities. And we learned that they only exist because a lot of people are willing to give, willing to do what they like and what they know for the benefit of others, to make a change.
As a USA poet (Maya Angelou) said, “people may forget what you said and may forget what you did, but they will never forget how you made them feel”.
And this is our mission, to make the children feel that they are important and have an opportunity.
Today, we are very happy to share with you that in several of the schools support by our organization new children generation does not know what is facing lack of food, clean water, school supply, and pediatric services.
Thanks to everyone for trusting in our foundation to be the liaison between the children who need our help and yourselves
Sumando Manos Foundation
Dear All, Thanks again for all you have done to help this cause and for trusting in our foundation to be the liaison between the children who needs our help and yourselves. We continue helping more than 7000 unprivileged children thoughout 100 communities in remote zones in Argentina through the work done by our nonprofit organization: Sumando Manos Foundation. Today (Wednesday, July 15th) starting at 9AM USA Eastern Time will start the one day on line event “Rewards Bonus Day” (until 11:59 PM or funds run out). For each donation received today through our project posted in GlobalGiving website, donations will be matched with an additional 50% for our organization. Here is the link to access our project.
Any amount is very helpful to support the nutrition, health and education programs that we are managing to improve the quality of underprivileged children lives and their communities in Argentina.
Please do not hesitate to contact me if you need further information about our activities or our nonprofit organization. With gratitude,
Dear friends, we are happy to share with you the successfully implementation of the equipment needed for the extraction and distribution of safe drinking water in School Nº 734 Ejército de los Andes, in Lote 3, Pampa Chica, Province of Chaco.
The school has 57 students in the kindergarten level and 110 in the elementary level who are the directly impacted by this improvement as well as their families who also benefit from the access to the water.
Contaminated water is a severe problem in schools of the province of Chaco because it hinders healthy childhood development and it produces extreme malnutrition in children.
The installation of a water extraction pump in the existing water well to transport water to a water tank and the pipes in order to distribute and supply water to the school bathrooms and kitchen is key to the school and community. This process was previously carried out by hand using buckets to extract the water and bring it to the bathrooms and kitchen; such procedure compromised water cleanliness and quality at the time of consumption or usage for hand or food washing .
The bathroom toilets were fixed and as well as the kitchen sink which is a great improvement of health conditions. Next week the piping system to provide water to the vegetable garden will be completed.
The completion of this project complements the key role of the teachers and directors in rural schools who take care of the academic aspects as well as a proper nutrition.
Thanks to everyone who took part in this project by trusting our foundation to be the liaison between you and the children who need your generosity by continuing to improve the quality of life of those children who need it the most.
We'd like to invite you to visit our website www.sumandomanos.org to learn more about our projects in 100 rural schools, feeding centers, foster homes and low income communities throughout 15 Argentine provinces. We reach these children through different medical, nutrition and education programs.
Queremos compartir con ustedes que hemos terminado en forma exitosa el proyecto para extracción y distribución de agua potable para la escuela Nº 734 Ejército de los Andes. Lote 3, Pampa Chica. Chaco.
La escuela cuenta hoy con 57 alumnos en jardín de infantes y 110 en nivel primario que se ven directamente beneficiados por la obra, así como indirectamente sus familias.
El problema del agua contaminada es un tema crítico en las escuelas de la provincia del Chaco, lo que imposibilita el sano desarrollo de los niños y genera problemas extremos de desnutrición,
A través de la instalación de un motor para la extracción del agua del aljibe, puesta en funcionamiento del tanque cisterna y de las cañerías para la distribución y abastecimiento del agua, ahora la escuela puede disponer de agua potable en baños y cocina, y así, reemplazar el proceso anterior que se realizaba a través de la extracción manual y acarreo a pie con baldes, que además comprometían la calidad del agua que sería consumida por los niños.
La obra incluyo el arreglo y puesta en funcionamiento de los baños que estaban en desuso y la cocina, y de esta forma, también se mejoran las condiciones de higiene, tanto de los niños, como también para el lavado de los alimentos que son consumidos por ellos. (Próximamente se completara el sistema de cañería para el riego de la huerta)
Esto complementa rol clave de los(as) maestros(as) y directores(as) en las escuelas rurales, ya que sirven de contención a los niños, y les garantizan que reciban su alimentación diaria.
Gracias a todos los que participaron y gracias por confiar en nuestra organización para que sea el enlace entre ustedes y los niños que necesitan de su generosidad, así continuar mejorando la calidad de vida de los niños que más lo necesitan.
Los invitamos a visitar nuestro sitio en Internet www.sumandomanos.org y conocer en más detalle sobre los proyectos de ayuda, alimentación, nutrición y educación que realizamos en alrededor de 100 escuelas rurales, comedores infantiles y barrios carenciados, en 15 provincias de ARGENTINA.