4 Years with a Cessna Caravan: Providing Emergency Flights & Transport in Bolivia

On July 13, 2018 – 4 years ago – Mano a Mano staff, board members, and volunteers went to Fleming Field in South St. Paul to check out the Cessna Caravan before it started its journey to Bolivia. Since arriving in Bolivia, this plane has increased the capacity of Mano a Mano Aviation’s program to transport more people & more cargo, more efficiently. The aviation program has stayed busy in 2022: every month, on average, our aviation program has provided emergency air transport for 20-30 people; transported 20,000 pounds of cargo; and transported volunteer medical professionals to provide 1-2 weekend health clinics.

Loading 3 Containers with Medical Supplies and Mobility Equipment for Bolivia

Over the course of this week, we will be loading 3 containers at our St. Paul warehouse with donated medical supplies and mobility equipment for shipment to Bolivia, where they will be distributed to people and organizations in need throughout the country. In March of 2022, we shipped 3 containers with 79,698 pounds of supplies from Minnesota to Bolivia.

Villa Nueva Clinic is Nearly Complete

Construction of our new clinic in Villa Nueva is nearly complete! There is still more work to be done before the project is finished and can be formally dedicated, but we are happy to see the progress on this clinic. Thanks to our counterpart organization Mano a Mano Bolivia for managing this project.

Villa Nueva Clinic.

Making Progress on Our Pollinator Garden in St. Paul, Minnesota

Once the spring passed, Mano a Mano volunteers began to create our pollinator garden on the west side of our 925 Pierce Butler Route office/warehouse. Our volunteer landscape artist Ellen ordered hardy, native plants, which were selected because they attract bees and butterflies. She and others have done much prep work, followed by planting the first section of the garden. Thanks to the Awesome Foundation for the gift in support of Mano a Mano’s pollinator garden! Watching this project unfold has been exciting and gratifying for everyone who has taken part in it.

Waca Playa Water Well is Complete

Mano a Mano has completed drilling a deep water well in Waca Playa to a depth of 115 meters (377 feet). The well is yielding more than sixty gallons of water per minute. We have other deep water well projects underway, including an improvement on our water well at our Center for Ecological Agriculture.

Mano a Mano staff working on the Waca Playa water well. We pumped bentonite into the bore hole during drilling to keep gravel from falling in and to make sure the sides remained intact. When drilling was complete, we pumped bentonite out of the well and into the slurry pool. The project engineer delivered 10 gallons of additive to the slurry pool site; it will help loosen the bentonite which had been pumped into the well during the drilling process. The final step involves running the pump for at least 48 hours to fully cleanse bentonite and other impurities from the well water.

Remembering Bob Rosenbloom

Mano a Mano was sad to hear the news that Bob Rosenbloom recently passed away. We extend our sincere condolences and best wishes to Bob’s friends and family. From his obituary: “Bob caught the travel bug after his graduation from Princeton University in 1967, when he served in Bolivia with the Peace Corps. These two years proved a formative experience, sparking lifelong passions for community development, Latin America and the Spanish language, along with friendships with fellow volunteers that lasted for the next 55 years. Most recently, after a return trip to Bolivia with these friends, he helped raise funds for the nonprofit Mano a Mano to dig a well for a small community there.”

Halfway Through 2022: Working Together to Help Bolivian Communities

In partnership with communities, through the first half of 2022 Mano a Mano has built new clinics and schools; built deep water wells and water reservoir expansions; provided emergency flights and weekend health clinics; distributed medical supplies and equipment throughout the country; and provided training through a variety of programs, among other projects. These new projects join the hundreds of community projects built over the past 2+ decades that all improve health and increase well-being for thousands of Bolivians. Thank you to the many people that work together – mano a mano, hand in hand – to improve the health and well-being of Bolivian communities!