While Christmas is a time of celebrating and giving, not everyone will be gifting bow-adorned boxes full of the latest gadgets to their loved ones or spending the season aglow with jolly-filled cheer.
Why? Because millions of families, right now, are living in makeshift tents (if they are lucky) all across Central America. These families are going without food and basic necessities as a result of being hit by – not one, but multiple – catastrophic natural disasters within the span of the last few weeks. Let’s not forget that these regions also face ongoing tragedies of extreme poverty, political strife and the afflictions of COVID-19.
These unexpected events present us with the opportunity to give unexpected gifts. Would you consider going over and beyond in your giving this year to help those in dire need by supporting local non-profits?
We suggest giving to local non-profits because sometimes the best option just is to put funds directly in the hands of those with the closest ties to their own communities.
That’s why we’ve compiled the list below of organizations that have boots-on-the-ground relationships to the communities in Central America. These organizations have been recommended to us by our friends and family who want to see their communities recover. Fountainhead donated this year to TECHO.
Photo courtesy of New York Times, Ocon/Agence France-Presse
- The Ruth Paz Foundation is a non-profit organization in one of the hardest hit areas of Honduras - San Pedro Sula. The organization is devoted to providing medical services to low-income patients through the delivery of high-quality healthcare services, surpassing the care available within the public health system. It is registered NGO in the U.S. with 501(c) 3 status. https://gf.me/u/y7kaxv
- Operacion Frijol has a special ‘Operacion Eta’ program for those impacted by the hurricanes in addition to its ongoing mission to raise funds to buy basic food supplies, such as beans, rice, corn and wheat flour, bread, butter, coffee, pasta, among others. The organization distributes goods through Emissaries of the Catholic Church to communities in high need. https://www.operacionfrijol.org/
- TECHO is an organization present in 19 Latin American countries, which seeks to overcome the situation of poverty that millions of people are born into. Funds provided to this organization for hurricane relief efforts will provide power kits, shelter and resources families living in vulnerable settlements. https://www.givingway.com/campaign/ffb76b
- Chavalos de Aquí y Allá brings together local youth to form a support system for under-resourced families in Nicaragua and California, USA. The organization has spent the last decade supporting humanitarian aid efforts in Central America by hosting development and cultural programs for youth on traditional Central American dance, folklore, poetry and more. It is hosting special efforts for those impacted by the hurricanes. https://chavalo.org/donations/hurricane_eta/
- The Honduran Foundation for Children’s Cancer is helping the families of its patients who have been impacted by the hurricanes. https://eventos.salvamivida.org/hurricane-relief
- Global Giving has established a fund specifically for the support recovery and relief efforts for those impacted by Hurricane Ita, initially with helping first responders meet survivors’ immediate needs for food, fuel, clean water, hygiene products and shelter. The fund will transition to support longer-term recovery efforts run by local, vetted organisations in the communities affected. https://www.globalgiving.org/projects/hurricane-eta-relief-fund/
Thank you for making time to help others this holiday season. Even during difficult times Caymankind finds a way to help those most in need. That's what makes us who we are.