Monday, May 21, 2007

And here I am...

This is funny. Because I'm in Honduras logged onto a server here, blogger is all in Spanish. I will not publish my post, I will "publicar entrada."

We didn't end up driving to Santa Rosa. That's Thursday. We're in San Pedro Sula all week. OMG, it is hot here. The sun is brutal. I think even my eyelids are burned. Now I know why the windows are all deeply tinted on the buses and why the men wear cowboy hats. Dusty as well... it's their rainy season, but it hasn't begun yet.

We saw a few projects this afternoon that made me feel good. One is a papaya and guava and tilapia co-op that is very successful. They've had two harvests already of papaya and are doing great, even exporting the fruit next time to El Salvador, as well as giving the locals a very low cost source of nutrition. The above photo is the field. The Taiwanese mission project, I forget the name now, trains them and stops by every 15 days to see how they are doing. The papaya trees are a special hybrid from Taiwan that produces twice the amount of fruit.
The tilapia ponds are my favorite; a low cost project that produces excellent fish. Honduras is the number one exporter of tilapia.
I asked our projects guy about doing more projects for WOMEN to teach them self-sufficiency and work with them in an arena where there is a need. Not just teaching them to sew, but teaching them to sew, setting them up in cottage industries to fulfill a need and teaching them independence.
Translation: You're a single mom. You don't need a man to rely on. Or tell you what to do.
He is going to do just that... which will be really cool. And the organization we are touring with this week, the one we work with a lot here, is headed by a woman who is very very enthusiastic about development projects for women. We're seeing one tomorrow...
I need to see fulfillment and hope because it's been pretty much a downer in the stories I've gotten, which is necessary... because the gut-wrenching stuff raises the money. But for me personally, I have to see the good side, the fulfillment, which makes me feel more cheery and realize we are making a difference.
I did interview this woman today... she was born with both feet backwards, but walks just fine. No one will give her a job because they just assume she can't work because of her disability. She has no house, but is living in a borrowed room with her two sons and her nephew. Her bed is bricks and a board.
She was also gang raped. Literally. By one of the local gangs that terrorizes the communities down here.
I didn't ask her about that. I just didn't want to know... I guess that makes me sounds chicken, but it wasn't necessary to the story... I can't use the violent angle anyway. And I know we'll build her a house. And get her a little project to sell stuff and support her kids.
I just didn't want to hear any more horrific violence stories. Not today... today I just wanted to gaze in peaceful contentment at the field of papaya and guava and the tilapia ponds, and remember the good stuff. Not the bad...

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