ABOUT THE ORGANIZATION
Empowering Communities, Changing Lives
We're doing whatever it takes to provide secondary, as well as higher, education and balanced nutrition in rural La Paz, El Salvador.
In El Salvador, education is free through the ninth grade; however, only 33% of the children old enough for secondary school actually attend (https://web.stanford.edu/). Where we work, in La Paz, children do not attend high school either 1) because their families cannot afford the costs of transportation and materials or 2) because they are needed in the fields.
Our Knowledge is Power Program provides high school and university scholarships, which allow families financial peace of mind and give students the opportunity to broaden their perspectives and skills. Students are required to keep good grades, attend monthly leadership workshops, and create an annual community development project to give back to their people.
According to the World Food Programme, "three major nutritional problems overlap in El Salvador: stunting (caused by malnutrition) in children under five years of age; anaemia in women of reproductive age; and obesity and overweight in adults (also seen increasingly in children)." These are "fueled by poor access to nutritious food, scarcely diversified diets – poor consumption of vegetables and fruits – and a lack of nutritional awareness."
Our Farming for the Future Program provides organic farming training and materials for individual family gardens or larger farming plots, all with the purpose of balancing the traditional diet of beans and corn with more sustainable vegetable and fruit options. Families save the seeds from their harvests, so after a year of training and guidance, they have a sustainable food source for life for their families.
CdA drives change within rural communities in La Paz, El Salvador by facilitating dialogue to identify local challenges and by providing the tools necessary for the community to take action to address those challenges.