Update on Colombian Projects

Hello Friends,

We are incredibly thankful for the progress made in our three programs in Colombia despite the difficulties of this year. Going virtual has actually strengthened some program aspects. We have huge respect for our Colombian partners for their diligence in creating new modes of communicating and supporting their respective communities.

We also want to thank YOU, our friends and donors, for your faithful interest and support.

Green Light Program

Practicing good hygiene
Carlos and his parents simulating good hygiene practices with paint.

Carlos Augusto is a member of a Yes Club. In this picture he engages his parents, Sergio and Silvia, in a training module developed by the Investing Hope Foundation titled, “Entrepreneur in the time of Crisis”. This module teaches good hygiene practices when preparing any type of food and the contaminants that can be avoided through careful handwashing.

The objective of this simulation is to raise awareness of the importance of hygiene in maintaining health. The module also encourages Carlos and his parents to think of what they could do for others in the time of the pandemic.

By the way, Carlos Augusto won top prize for money saved and his club saved the most of all 4 Yes clubs in Santander.

Marcela used her savings to purchase this pot.

Marcela is a member of a Gema savings group. She typically makes and sells tamales to earn money. This year has been particularly difficult to save because the cost of ingredients has risen markedly. However, through great effort by buying only that which was strictly necessary, and the help of Father God (her words) she was able to save the most in her group. She decided to invest her savings to help grow her business so she bought a huge pot to produce more tamales.

Marcela had never saved money before starting with the Gema group and states that it has been a very positive experience. Her long-term goal is to save enough money to construct a house for her family and to afford to educate her children.

Safe Water Program

The Safe Water Program made some progress despite the pandemic stopping or postponing many community activities. For example, the Rotary Club of Ipiales was able to complete one project when lockdown was partially lifted.

Rotary Club of Ipiales training indigenous families prior to installation in their homes.
An installer finishing up an installation in the home.

Meanwhile, a lot of work was done to secure funding for next year’s projects. Five Rotary clubs have funding applications either approved or in progress. CAPD’s partners, Ivan and Rocio of FRPG, went virtual with training as well as connecting with prospective clients who have shown interest in developing projects.

CAPD and FRPG have strong connection with a Calgary-based BioSand Educational organization called CAWST who have developed a certification program for facilitators, constructors, and installers. FRPG has received various certifications and have certified 20-30 people. They also participated in a learning exchange with 15 participants held by Zoom.

FANDIC – Program of Inclusion

Yerly Carolina’s family didn’t miss a beat when they went virtual. Instead of visits to Fandic Centre for therapy, they created a space in the home where Yerly’s mother (who couldn’t work due to the pandemic) and her grandmother carried on with her therapy throughout the week as guided by the therapists involved in her care. The family reports that Yerly was very happy working at home. She improved in her communication with the family, made physical gains in postural control, and generally became more attentive in listening and observing.

Her caregivers also participated in the Women’s Support Network, a special on-line initiative of Fandic for 40 women and youth with intellectual disability that emphasized personal empowerment, leadership training, and self-esteem. These workshops were considered necessary because of the increased pressure on women to fulfil multiple roles within the family due to the lockdown and to help them deal with emotional tensions and communication issues arising within the family. The sessions, led by professionals volunteering their time, encouraged sharing by the participants that helped to strengthen social ties and establish friendships. The women also received T-shirts and caps that identified them as a woman’s support network, another self-esteem booster.  

FANDIC distributes groceries supplied by the Municipality to 40 families.

On that note of giving and receiving, we end our post with hearts full of gratitude that our program communities are healthy and safe.

Thanks be to God and to you, our supporters and friends.

Bob, Marlene and CAPD Board.