Improving quality of life and generating new opportunities
Our work always begins with schools and children. As we get to know the children and adults in the school system, we also begin to learn about pressing needs in their communities. We focus on vocational training and the formation of small businesses in the urban region, while centering our efforts around trees, water and food in rural areas. We work closely with community leaders to identify actions that will mitigate the impact of climate change, promote food security, and offer viable economic opportunities.
When opportunities are few, it’s easy to lose hope. Learning a trade gives a person purpose and a marketable skill that can help lift their entire family out of poverty. Whether it’s building furniture, sewing purses, or baking bread, we seek to equip community members with the skills they need to get ahead.
Small Business Development
Entrepreneurship has the potential to raise standards of living, create jobs, and transform a community, but starting a new business is no easy task. When community members show interest in launching a new venture, we walk alongside them throughout the process, providing the training and support that will allow their business to thrive.
The rural communities surrounding the city of Matagalpa have been severely deforested. This is mostly due to agriculture, livestock and the constant demand for firewood. We work with rural families to plan annual reforestation campaigns during the rainy season, from May through October.
Community Water Projects
Although access to water is something taken for granted in countries like the U.S., many rural communities in Matagalpa face severe water scarcity for months at a time. During the dry season, families have to spend a significant portion of their income buying water from government trucks that pass through the community. Rayo de Sol works to provide innovative solutions such as rain harvesting tanks to ensure access to this vital resource.
Small-Scale Organic Farming
Most families in the rural communities where we work are subsistence farmers. They grow small plots of beans and corn, mostly for consumption. Because of degraded soils, they have to use chemical fertilizers and pesticides for limited yields. We train local farmers how to grow nutritious vegetables, using the Biointensive Method of organic farming.