Nicaragua Conquista Nandaime
$50,000 needed of $100,000
The municipality of Conquista is located in the Pacific Dry Corridor of Nicaragua. Over the last decades temperatures in this region have steadily increased, and drought conditions have become more prevalent due to climate change. At times droughts have been so severe that emergency food aid had to be distributed and wells went dry.
In response to climate change and the challenges it has brought to this region, this program is working to help communities adapt by promoting farming techniques that are better suited for the increasingly dry climate. This means training farmers in alternative crops like plantains, cassava, dragon fruit, citrus fruits, and papayas. Trainings are focused on “lead farmers” that learn and use the new techniques in their own farms and then provide training to their neighbors on the techniques. This program has also supported the construction of water systems to insure that families have clean drinking water throughout the year.
Savings Groups Meet with Success
Last year Gladis attended – with skepticism – a meeting about Savings and Internal Lending Communities (SILC) supported by local partner Fundación San Lucas. This year, after seeing what her SILC allowed her to accomplish, that skepticism is gone. “It has been a wonderful experience,” she says, “and there are lots of women and men who are motivated by hearing about our group’s success.”
Gladis’s husband, Isidro, is a farmer who plants mainly sorghum, beans and corn, and looks for temporary work elsewhere when times get hard. She works in the home and raises their three children.
After she and 24 other women in the village received training, organized their own SILC, and wrote their group policies, Gladis was elected to be a part of their Leadership Council. Once they started to save, they were also able to give small loans ($15 to $60) to members of the group.
Gladis recalls her first loan. “I used it to help my husband buy food for 100 broiler chickens that we raised with help from San Lucas.” When it was time to sell the chickens, the whole family pitched in to pluck and prepare them, and Isidro went out to find buyers in all of the neighboring communities. “Thanks to God, we were able to sell all of the chickens before the rainy season!” Then, with a different loan, Gladis bought a pig that will soon give birth.
The group returned members’ savings to them in December as part of its normal functioning. Gladis reports that her savings allowed her to pay off debts, buy a hand mill for processing grains or coffee, and a solar panel for their house. The group began its second savings cycle in January.
“Despite difficulties, including the pandemic, we are getting ahead,” says Gladis with a smile.
Nicaragua Conquista Nandaime
Led by World Renew and Local Partner Fundación San Lucas