As many of you know, 2018 has been an eventful year in Nicaragua due to socio-political protests and unrest. Many organizations that have worked in different regions throughout the country have closed their doors and ceased services, whether temporarily or permanently. We at Amigos en Acción are proud to say that we have continued as normal, providing services to the 26 children enrolled in our program. We want to reiterate that Amigos en Acción is not a political or religious organization. Now, more than ever, our services are crucial for these children, ensuring that they have the educational support they need to do well in school, providing them with a healthy snack every day, and learning English in a fun, interactive class where they have the chance to expand their knowledge and broaden their experiences. Plus, it helps them to maintain stability in their lives and know that this support system continues to be there for them. We do want to assure you all that El Sauce has remained calm and safe, and life is continuing pretty much as normal. Unfortunately, the largest impact that these events have had on Amigos en Acción is that two groups have had to cancel their trips to work with our students due to the situation in the country. We are sad that our Nicaraguan students and those who would have come from the US will not have the opportunity to interact and learn from each other. In addition, since individuals and groups that volunteer with us make a financial donation to ensure that the program can continue, this means that we are missing out on some much-needed financial support.
At this time, we are excited to announce an opportunity for you to get involved and to support Amigos en Acción. We are kicking off a fundraiser that we hope you will all be willing to support and share with your friends and family. Our goal is to get 92 people to donate $92 to Amigos en Acción. Why that oddly specific number, you might ask? It is in honor of my (co-founder Ashley Sullivan’s) grandmother, Betty Sullivan, who would have turned 92 this year. Back in 2013, while my parents and I were visiting with my grandma, she asked me about what I was doing in Nicaragua. She was especially interested in the scholarship program run by Ciudad Hermana, another organization that initiated the relationship between Rochester, NY and El Sauce, Nicaragua 30 years ago and continues to support the town; the majority of the students that participate in Amigos en Acción are Ciudad Hermana scholarship recipients. After hearing all about the program and how it works, she asked “Could I support a student?” Of course, the answer was yes! After receiving the sponsorship packet the first year, including a picture of the student she was matched with and a thank-you letter, she asked if she could sponsor another student! She continued to sponsor those two students until she passed away last year.
This fundraiser is in my grandmother’s honor, who gave me an incredible example of humility and generosity. She had a strong spirit and was a pillar for her family. I learned so much from her and hope to be able to follow in her footsteps. Since she would have turned 92 this year, I am challenging all of you to be a part of 92 people to donate $92 to allow Amigos en Acción to continue providing services to the children we work with every day. I recognize that everyone is in a different season of life, but I want to encourage all of you to reflect and see what you can donate to help this program to be available for these children. Maybe $92 is more than you can afford at this time. But what about $50? Or what if you find two friends, and each of you donate $30? On the flip side, maybe you have had a really great year and would be willing to round up to make a donation of $100! Since this is the holiday season, maybe you have someone on your list that insists that they don’t need anything, and you would like to make a donation in their name. Let us know if this is the case, and we would be happy to send a letter for you to share with that person so they can learn about the program and what that donation supports. Whatever you are able to give, know that every dollar helps. Remember, 100% of donations go directly to supporting our program. Plus, since JOS is a recognized 501(c)(3), all donations are tax-deductible. For any further questions about this fundraiser or how to get involved, please contact Ashley Sullivan at [email protected] We challenge ALL of you to get involved!