Stories of Hope!

This newsletter is filled with Stories of Hope! We hope you will find your story connecting with ours as you read about the work being done in Nicaragua, because YOU have helped make it all happen!

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

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JUSTHOPEELEMENTARYGive HOPE instead of "stuff" for Christmas

Give a scholarship for a child to go to school

Give a micro-credit loan to a woman

Give help with adequate housing for a family

Give a day of health care for a community

Stitching Hope...

After bumping and sliding through the torrential rain that had settled over Nicaragua, our battered old truck pulled into Chacraseca an hour late. Six women were there, waiting and hoping for us with the patience that people living in extreme poverty develop in order to survive. (In Spanish, the single word "esperanza" means both to wait and to hope.) The women had slugged through miles of muddy fields to be with us, two carrying old, well-worn sewing machines. Their smiles signaled their eagerness to learn something that might equip them to earn a few dollars to help feed their children. Their hope was palpable, radiant -- the kind of stubborn hope that refuses to be defined by poverty, or discouraged by tropical depressions; the kind of hope that dreams big, then rises before dawn, walks for miles, and labors late into the night pursuing those dreams.

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sew2"Stitching Hope" is a project of JustHope's newest exploring partner. It is a project to create a sewing center that will give women in Chacraseca a place to use sewing skills to make items for export (like clergy stoles, bags, and t-shirts) and items for local use (like school uniforms).

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Women United (Mujeres Unidas)

For several months, Wendi didn't know how she was going to pay her loan. She'd joined the micro-credit group in Chacraseca, and gotten a loan to start a small tortilla business in her home. Then her new baby had to be hospitalized, and her husband lost his job, and Wendi got too sick to work. There was no 'savings account' and Wendi found herself unable to work, unable to feed her child, unable to pay her debt. She was scared. Wendi shared her situation with her micro-credit support group... and along with supporting and encouraging her, they helped her find ways to make ends meet. Wendi's husband is working again; her child is sick but able to be cared for at home...and last week, Wendi made two loan payments. "The women are more than a support group -- they are my family" Wendi said. "They are the reason we made it through this time."

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"Mujeres Unidas" is the name the women in Chacraseca have chosen for their microcredit and social business program. They meet once a month; they support one another's businesses; they hold one another ccountable. Not only have they each grown a small business, together they have grown the program to support 55 women. And their repayment rate is 100%

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To support any of our partner projects, use the DONATE button below!

JANUARY TEAM NEEDS 2 TRAVELERS!!

Our January 15-22 house-building team needs two more participants. Click here for more information

What's Needed in Nicaragua...

Sewing Supplies: scissors, seam rippers, sewing machine, thread, clip on table lamps, used Pfaff sewing machines

Clinic Supplies: IBprofin; pregnancy tests; latex gloves

Children's shoes

UPDATES

Micro-Credit Project-- 55 women in Chacraseca and 30 in Santa Emilia are now active in JustHope's micro-credit project in Chacraseca!  Another 25 have their projects ready and are on the waiting list for funding ($200 each)

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LaFlor's new Community Tienda is expanding to include selling basic grains and farming supplies - saving LaFlor's family farmers hours and dollars!

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The first year of operation is now completed for the Santa Emilia High School started by JustHope partners. 31 men and women (from 18-35) received their diplomas! Education is changing futures!

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Our Wine to Water PS effort to fund Scholarships for Children in Chacraseca to attend school has raised $4000 -- enough for 100 children to attend school for a year! Each child will get a uniform, shoes, a backpack, and school supplies!

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Chacraseca Summitt 1 is scheduled for Jan 19 and 20. Solidarity partners will be gathering with community leaders to consider more effective ways of working together and for Chacraseca. For more information contact Leslie Penrose