Our counterpart organization Mano a Mano Nuevo Mundo focuses on community development projects that improve food security, access to water, and economic development in partnership with rural Bolivian communities.

Check out what we are able to accomplish, working together, in 2022:

6 Deep Water Wells Completed in 2022

  1. Centro Poblado – Estadio, Municipality of Punata – 1,000 families
  2. Juzgado Chico, Municipality of Arani – 65 families
  3. CEA, Municipality of Cochabamba – 50 families
  4. Centro Poblado – Wacaplaya, Municipality of Punata – 1,000 families
  5. Centro Poblado – Lavanderia, Municipality of Cliza – 1,000 families
  6. Centro Poblado – Cancha, Municipality of Cliza – 1,000 families

In total, we completed 6 deep water wells in 2022, directly benefiting 4,115  families (approximately 24,690 people).

Dedicated a Third Expansion of Laguna Sulti Reservoir

On June 11, 2022, community members invited Mano a Mano to celebrate the third expansion of their Laguna Sulti water reservoir. This reservoir expansion, carried out with the hard-working team and heavy equipment of Mano a Mano Nuevo Mundo, means wider access to water for area families in need. The community plans to make this celebration an annual event.

Punata Regional Complex Runway

Mano a Mano continued the daily work on the Mano a Mano runway to which the Mano a Mano aviation program will be relocated in 2024. The base foundation of the 1,500-meter runway was finished during 2022; work continues on the base layer. When the base is complete, Mano a Mano will lay asphalt on an 1,100-foot-long portion of this runway during 2023.

Banner of Mano a Mano’s Punata Regional Complex, including a regional airport.

Mano a Mano started the “Punata Regional Complex” in 2021– a comprehensive project in the Cochabamba Valley’s Punata region over the next three years that includes a 3rd expansion of the Laguna Sulti agricultural water reservoir (complete, and celebrated on June 11, 2022); a new public school (complete, and dedicated on March 25, 2022); a deep well for potable water (complete, and dedicated in March 2022); a three-mile road (complete – see below); infrastructure needed for moving our aviation program from the Cochabamba airport; and preparation for a rural Center for Ecological Agriculture (CEA). There is a LOT more work to be done, but we are excited for the impact that the Punata Regional Complex can have for the future.

Completed Chirusi-Toco Road

Mano a Mano completed a 3-mile road that connects Chirusi and Toco (part of the Punata Regional Complex project); the original path that connected these villages to each other and to markets beyond their borders was severed when the Mano a Mano runway was laid out. The new road ensures continued access for these communities.

The Chirusi-Toco road (it’s just missing gravel and a bridge crossing Laguna Sulti in this picture).

Completed Flood Prevention Project in Islas Malvinas

Nuevo Mundo built retaining levees and elevated a section of streets in the community of Islas Malvinas to protect it from flooding. This community of about 100 families lies adjacent to the Punata Regional Complex runway; both Islas Malvinas and Mano a Mano’s future runway will be protected from flooding. This wall surrounds the excavated area that will collect water from seasonal rains, creating a reservoir which will hold water that would otherwise flood the homes of Islas Malvinas’ 100 families. The reservoir water will irrigate neighboring fields during the dry season. Having seen the results of the nearby Laguna Sulti reservoir and the success of its community celebration in June, the residents of Islas Malvinas decided to establish a yearly celebration in their village, held on August 13 last year.

Completed Water Projects (Well, Water Tower, Tubing) in Chirusi Rosario

Over the course of the last year, we completed a new deep well, a 6-story water tower, and are installing piping for the water to go directly to each of the 212 households in the community.

Maintaining Mano a Mano’s Heavy Equipment

In order for Mano a Mano to be able to partner with Bolivian communities on economic development projects like water reservoirs, deep wells, and roads, we need to be able to provide the skilled labor and heavy equipment that is required for the work; that is one of the primary responsibilities and commitments of Mano a Mano as part of the partnership. Keeping our heavy equipment in good shape is a never-ending process, and is made more difficult since almost all of our development projects are in extremely isolated areas of Bolivia where breakdowns (which inevitably happen!) mean protracted downtime as staff have to travel hours or days one-way to be able to source repair parts in the city. Maintenance and repairs at our Cochabamba warehouse are key – and never-ending!

Purchased a Rock Crusher

Crushing rock for the Mano a Man runway requires a crushing machine. Fortunately, a business owner, one who “believes in” Mano a Mano’s work, was willing to sell his crusher to us at a reasonable price. With this purchase and the laborious transport of the crusher and accompanying generator to the runway site, we were able to move forward with the project. The rock crusher will lessen the ultimate cost of the runway projects.

Training Machine Operators and Mechanics

Just as Mano a Mano’s clinics require highly trained physicians, nurses and dentists, our water and road projects simply could not happen without skilled mechanics and machine operators.

Mano a Mano Nuevo Mundo’s formalized training program intends to:

  • Respond to the need for trained personnel to build complex infrastructure projects
  • Increase economic development capacity in Bolivia
  • Create opportunities for disadvantaged youth

We use an Earn and Learn approach: the student earns a ½-time salary while receiving on-the-job training, first at the Cochabamba machine shop and then performing more and more complex tasks under close supervision on an actual project. Heavy machine mechanic students learn welding, hydraulics, motor repair, tire repair, sheet metal work, and painting. They graduate in six months with a certificate in heavy machine mechanics.

Mano a Mano Nuevo Mundo had at least 5 operators in training last year in 2022 (paid part time while receiving on-the-job training).

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