The orchard is flourishing!

We recently received news from Piedras Negras and learned that the school’s fruit orchard, which Hancock’s fundraising afforded the community, is flourishing. Karla Ramirez (the teacher at the school and daughter of our host, Elva Gomes) and 20 of her students are tending the trees –  keeping them healthy by making and applying bocashi (organic compost) and pruning. The children are already snacking on nutritious plantains from the orchard. Oranges, mangos, avocados, and cashews are flowering and will be ready for harvest soon.

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Meet Consuelo Hernandez

This is the new field trainer, Consuelo Hernandez. What a winning smile! The families have been very happy with her assistance. She has motivated them to participate in new projects and has coordinated with Karla and the students in maintaining the fruit orchard. Soon she will be giving a workshop on making different types of food, including: milk, sausage, cheese, enchiladas, eggs and horchata (a rice-based drink) to help improve nutrition.

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Coffee Coffee Coffee

Piedras Negras farmers Marilliano Lopez, Matilde Manzano and Angel Alvarado are growing organic coffee for commercial purposes. Together, they have produced 6000 pounds of bocashi (organic compost) and 36 liters of madrifol (organic pesticide), which they have used on their coffee plants to improve the quality and yield. While these farmers are in the final, commercial phase of their work with SHI, and thus will be ready to graduate from the program in the spring of 2014, others are not as far along. SHI has decided to wait and graduate all the Peidras Negras families together in the spring of 2015. We’ll plan a Hancock celebration for the big day!

Successful fall fundraising

We are also delighted to report that Hancock’s fall fundraising efforts were very successful. Between the wine raffle, holiday fair, and several very generous donors, we raised $4000! Together with the gift from Christian Service, that brings us very close to our annual $8000 goal. Thank you all for your help in making our efforts so successful. Roy Lara, FUCHOSO’s senior Field Trainer, reports that “the children, the teacher and the families of FUCHOSO are very thankful for the support received from the field trainers, FUCHOSO and you, our donors.”

Off to Panama!

Finally, we have a group going to Panama with SHI February 17 – 24. We wish them well and look forward to hearing about their adventures when they return.

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