Mano a Mano just sent out a newsletter about our activities over the past few weeks (you can sign up here). We continue to work as best as we can; below are a few recent updates. We welcome any feedback – please feel free to reach out if you would like to connect!

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Personal Impact of COVID-19 – Note From Segundo

Thank you to everyone that attended our webinar last night with Unity Church-Unitarian where we discussed Mano a Mano’s work during the COVID-19 pandemic. As part of the webinar, our co-founder Segundo Velasquez shared a note about the personal impact COVID-19 has had, which we have posted on our website (here’s the link): From Segundo: “The impact of COVID-19 in Bolivia has touched Mano a Mano staff and volunteers and my family very personally. I talk with personnel from each of our Mano a Mano counterpart organizations almost every day. Since the virus began spreading in Bolivia in March, I have heard fear in their voices, a level of fear that I have never heard during protests and unrest. The unspoken questions: Who will be next? Who will not survive?…We stand in awe of their creativity in times of crisis and deeply appreciate their determination to move forward with the work that they know makes such a difference in the lives of so many.

Healthcare in the Time of COVID-19

Our counterpart organization Mano a Mano Bolivia focuses on health and education, and despite the challenges of 2020, they have completed new schools and clinics; distributed medical supplies & equipment for COVID-19 support; provided continuing health education and educational materials (often virtually); and have many other projects underway for the second half of 2020 and into next year (whenever we are able to work safely and effectively). Schools have been closed for the year in Bolivia, but our network of clinics continue to serve a vital role in providing access to primary health care for communities in rural Bolivia. Through the first half of 2020, Mano a Mano clinics have had 561,964 total patient visits.

Donating Supplies in Cochabamba for COVID-19 Support

Our counterpart Mano a Mano Internacional continues to donate medical supplies and equipment to health care organizations throughout Bolivia on a near-daily basis to help in their efforts with COVID-19. Recent donations have gone to organizations in and around the city of Cochabamba. We currently have 91,556 pounds of medical supplies and equipment en route to Bolivia from Minnesota. Thank you to the many people involved in making these distributions possible!

Current Experiments at the Center for Ecological Agriculture

Because Bolivia’s social distancing regulations have prohibited in-person classes, Mano a Mano staff at our Center for Ecological Agriculture (CEA) in Cochabamba have decided to use these months of down time to experiment with new demonstration projects. Their goal: to grow more food, in less space and at lower cost, using technology and materials that can be made available to remote rural communities.