Registrada en el Grupo 1º, Sección 1ª con el número 172.541 del Registro Nacional de Asociaciones del Ministerio del Interior
The Origins of our NGO
He was ministering in a town called Purulha in the Baja Verapaz in Guatemala, a disperse population of 30-32000 people, 4000 of whom lived in one centre with the rest divided into around 80 communities where three distinct Mayan dialects are spoken, Q’echi,Poqouchi and Achi.
The Dehesa community committed itself to buying sewing machines for a womens’ workshop in Purulha.
Our “barrio” is a working class community of simple people many of whom have to travel to the Costa del Sol to work in the construction industry, others are retired, unemployed, widowed or children. But the fact is that when Rafael, the parish priest, with three young people left for Guatemala not only had the funds been raised for the sewing machines but they were also able to give loans to several families to buy cardamom seeds, pay all the costs of measuring and buying 90 plots of land, pay for the building of two communal halls, buy 100 blankets for a hostel, cover the costs of cancer treatment for a young girl, provide the food for a communal dining hall, buy shoes for the children, and respond to the request of some communities who asked for religious images and bibles.
The most achievement has been the collaboration in these projects of everyone involved in our parish, from the youngest child to the oldest person.
The priest and his companions returned with photographs, letters, receipts… and a mass of dreams and projects for the next year.
We communicated these projects and ideas not only to our community but also to other sympathetic people in our town, Ronda, and in 2002 we were able to realize the following projects: supporting a teacher to give courses in dressmaking, the purchase of a cooking stove for a group of women, provide a video projector for the more remote communities, help in setting up two pharmacies in distant communities, the installation of a maize mill, the building of three communal hall and help with the renovation of another one, purchase of utensils for a dining hall of a new hostel, help with a children’s dining hall in a nearby town, paying for chemotherapy for a young father with cancer, help with the building of a kitchen in a community centre and a contribution to the purchase of music equipment for a group of young people.
Since that journey various groups and institutions have joined together to fund raise for these projects. At the beginning of 2003 we organized a fund-raising dinner at the Hotel Husa Reina Victoria, a festival in the Vicente Espinel Theatre, a raffle organized by the schools and colleges in Ronda and a tasting session in the local Workers’ Centre.
These activities had two objectives: firstly to develop a sense of solidarity in our town and secondly to finance two important projects – a cardamom drying plant and another maize mill.
The response could not have been better, not only in the fundraising activities but also with other voluntary support which made all the following possible: the purchase of ten sewing machines for a group of women and of a plot of land and the building of a house for an extremely poor widow with three children, the construction of two wooden houses for an elderly couple and a widow and of a community hall in Chicój. We gave help to a student and a dressmaking instructor. We supported a festival to promote indigenous culture, bought a freezer for a cooperative and we helped with the building of a hostel in La Pinada Centre.
During the present year, 2004, we have undertaken these projects: the purcgase of land for 54 families who were in the process of being evicted, sponsoring the enrolment, materials and support teacher for 66 students of the Poqouchi tribe in the Ribacó region, a maize mill for a remote community, the extension of a
community hall, scholarships for two young women for 2005, paid for firewood and washing for a very old couple, left funds for the completion of the floor of La Pinada Centre, and once again we have funded the dressmaking teacher for the coming year and the children’s dining hall in Santa Cruz.
For the next year, 2004-2005, we have set ourselves the following projects: the construction of a store with 34 silos for maize, beans and chilli, to continue supporting the students in their second year and the builing of three community halls. We hope to achieve this with the communal effort and understanding of our Ronda supporters and friends, and of course with the help of God, as they say in Guatemala, “God in first place”.
We have just completed the process of becoming an NGO for the Ronda area, but of course open to anyone concerned with the problems of the developing world wherever they live. The name we have chosen is Ronda in Solidarity with the Developing World; it can become the source of many projects, hopes and dreams for our bothers and sisters whose only fault has been to be born in a poor country.
2004 – 2005
We returned to Guatemala at the beginning of August 2005 with a series of projects and with the hope of being able to work in the other parts of Alta Verapaz. We were especially overjoyed when our NGO was finally registered in October 2004, enabling us to carry on working supported by the statutes and a considerable number of members who share our concerns.
Since August we began to work on the projects that we were presented with in Guatemala, these were:
With the help of God and the work of a good group of members, not only were we able to achieve the above but also we were also able to do the following:
We have been very pleased to be able to achieve more than we had initially planned.
For the following year, 2005-2006 we have brought back the following projects:
Like in the previous years, we believe that with help of God and the solidarity of our many brothers, these projects will come into being, little by little, if we continue to work together.
Projects for the year 2010-2011
Projects for the year 2011-2012