Build 100 Homes -- CHIP (the Chacraseca Housing Initiative Project)
Friends and Students have begun working toward our goal of building 100 homes to replace unsafe, unsanitary dwellings throughout the comarca of Chacraseca. These groups have been building dozens of homes in Chacraseca comarca for many years, but CHIP will greatly accelerate the process. Beginning in 2010, the first 22 homes were built including those funded by a $6,000 matching grant provided by the S.G. Foundation of Buellton, Calif. During 2011 and 2012 an additional 35 houses were built. The homes currently cost about $2500 each with a latrine and a floor. AND -- we were, in June 2014, approved to receive a second matching ("challenge") grant from the S.G. Foundation, this time for $12,000!!
Each recipient family assists in the construction process and pays for 25% of the house's cost interest-free over the course of four years.
During the recent Friends' working trips to Nicaragua, Pete White, Dick Wiltamuth, Kate Shreck, and the rest of the group were able to connect directly with families who have received homes through this program, assist in construction, and view the constructed homes.
See our Facebook page for photos --
Please think about making a donation for housing now!
Water for Nuevo
A longstanding project and dream has come to fruition -- water for Nuevo Amanecer! Nuevo Amanecer is a 300-member community built entirely through the efforts of Students for 60,000 over many years. The challenge there has always been water, water for irrigation and most importantly, pure drinkable water for the community. A well was dug and built, also through the efforts of Friends and Students. However, the well had to close due to arsenic contamination, and for several years water was trucked to the community as an emergency provision, a cumbersome and costly measure which was also provided by Friends and Students.
Finally, a new system is in place, thanks to the joint efforts of Friends, the Municipality of Telica, and the British not-for-profit Nuevas Esperanzas. Nuevas Esperanzas, a Leon-based nonprofit led by English hydrologist Dr. Andrew Longley, has provided the technical expertise in this project. Phase 1 of this new system involves again providing water for washing, bathing and agriculture to Nuevo and adjoining communities including La Union. Friends provided $28,500 for Phase 1, including funding a $3000 feasibility study. Phase 2 involved attempts to filter arsenic and other contaminants from the water. Phase 3, which is now completed, involves bringing clean drinkable water from springs high atop the Telica volcano. Friends contributed $3000 from our Walkathon toward the final $10,000 required to complete this project. Students for 60000 and Friends NE provided additional sums to reach the Phase 3 goal, so that the brave, patient people of the town which we built together and their neighbors finally have water!
During the Friends' April 2013 working trip to Nicaragua, Pete White, Bill Ofenloch, and others were able to have a first-hand look at the springs and the project's components, as well as talk at length with Dr. Longley about the project.
See our photos on Facebook to learn more!
Field of Dreams ("Parque Hermana Juanita")
The aims of this project are to provide a sorely-needed recreational venue for the youth of Chacraseca, Nicaragua, and to hold games to attract players and crowds from the nearby city of Leon. This project was the dream of Chacraseca community leader Paulino Martinez. In 2009, seven acres of land were purchased for $17,500 by Friends and Students near the Alberto Barrios School complex in Chacraseca for the development of modern-style baseball and soccer fields and children's playground. The land has been levelled and planned, design for water runoff from heavy rains created, and construction of soccer and baseball fields is ongoing. The fields are taking shape! The entire cost for the project, including fields, backstop, bleachers, dugouts, etc. is estimated at $100,000. ...The project is named in honor of Sister Joan, to recognize her enormous love for and dedication to the people of Nicaragua.
Friends is hopeful that this project will empower people to turn their dream of better recreational and commercial opportunities into reality. Friends has contacted all forty Major League baseball teams and more than 400 ballplayers to garner support, led by Pete White with the invaluable assistance of late Northport resident and member Dot Walker. Several Little League teams have been started and equipped, thanks to the ongoing support of Friends' members Pete White, who donated 1200 baseballs, and Millie Willen and Joanne Moran, working closely with the Northport Little League to provide bats, gloves, and uniforms. Hats off!
Beca (Scholarship) Program
In Nicaragua, impoverished children often cannot attend even elementary school because they lack clothing and basic supplies. Students for 60,000 and Friends have been providing educational opportunities for Nicaraguan students since 1996 in Chacraseca. Since the beginning, the number of enrolled elementary students has doubled, and the number of secondary-level students has risen by over 300 percent. Our scholarship (“becas”) program provides needed supplies and clothing to attend school. For an elementary student, a "beca" provides a backpack and school uniform (shoes, socks, pants or skirt, and shirt). Secondary and college students are provided needed transportation as well clothing and supplies. Upper-level students in Nicaragua receiving scholarships donate time to help the community.
If you'd like to donate to this program, earmark your donation or send us a message.
A Garden Grows
The Gateway Community Garden, Huntington Station, New York, enjoyed the first of many annual harvests in the fall of 2010. Friends of Students for 60,000 helped plant the seeds of its success in the spring of 2010 with a donation of $1,000. Some members of Friends also volunteered their labor to create the garden, and the Town of Huntington was responsible for clearing and grading the land, making it suitable for cultivation. This project was needed because residents of the Huntington Station neighborhood had little access to fresh, inexpensive vegetables that would help provide a healthy diet. The garden has 87 raised wooden beds, some for children and handicapped adults. The harvest includes eggplant, tomatoes, pumpkins, lettuce, corn and carrots, and the garden now includes a weekly farmers' market as well. The Garden and Farmers' Market are located on Lowndes Avenue off Route 110.
For more information on how to contribute funds or time, contact Friends or Frances Whittelsey at 631-271-1945
OUR FUNDRAISING CAMPAIGN --
HELP PROVIDE A NICARAGUAN FAMILY WITH A LIVELIHOOD, A HOME, AN EDUCATION, or RECREATION.
Every bit helps! -- Please donate by Paypal (see above) or send a check made out to Friends of Students for 60,000 to 16 Stony Hollow Rd., Centerport NY 11721.