Our Favorite Videos of 2019

As 2019 comes to a close, we want to highlight some of our favorite videos we have shared this year. Click the links below for more end of year highlights:

Celebrating 25 Years in Operation

2019 was a milestone year for Mano a Mano as we celebrated our 25th anniversary in operation! We started in 1994 with the simple goal of saving usable medical supplies from the landfill in Minnesota. We never thought that we would grow into a community development organization with 5 counterpart organizations, 50 staff, and more than 1,000 community development projects throughout Bolivia. This video was made in partnership with TPT, along with 5 others, to highlight the local people in Minnesota that are a huge part of Mano a Mano’s success.

You can see all of our videos made in partnership with TPT on their website here.

Reducing Waste in Minnesota and Improving Lives in Bolivia

Mano a Mano started in 1994 with the goal of saving usable supplies from the landfill in Minnesota and sending them to Bolivia, where we knew they could be put to good use. Every year, we send around 200,000 pounds of supplies from Minnesota to Bolivia; nearly all of these items would end up in the garbage in the US. Instead, they equip Mano a Mano clinics; support Bolivian hospitals and healthcare organizations; and provide needed items to people with physical limitations throughout the country. We are grateful to Goodwill and other local partners that help reduce waste and recycle these supplies and equipment!

IZUMI Foundation – 20th Anniversary

“This work can have its frustrations, its laughter, its tears. That’s life, right? It has it all. We have to keep going, keep working. Because there are still a lot of people in need.” – Maria Blanca Velasquez Urey, Mano a Mano International (at the 2:40 mark of the video).

The IZUMI Foundation cultivates partnerships to address complex health challenges across Africa and Latin America. They are celebrating their 20th anniversary in 2019, and this video features some of the programs they support. Mano a Mano is grateful to partner with the IZUMI Foundation, and for some of our work in Bolivia to be included in this video!

Mano a Mano’s New Plane is Flying!

Mano a Mano’s Caravan airplane began flying in Bolivia in March 2019. After purchasing it in Minnesota last summer and months of training and prep, it was flown from Fleming Field in the Twin Cities to Cochabamba, Bolivia last October. Over the next 5 months, we obtained registration and certification, customs payment, and the approval to purchase jet fuel for the airplane. All was completed and the airplane was able to start flying (5 months is actually an extremely fast turnaround). Our aviation program provides emergency flights and transport for weekend health clinics, cargo, and staff.

This is a video of our plane landing in the Bolivian tropics on one of its first flights in March:

Drone Tour of the Maldonado Water Reservoir

On March 13, 2019 Mano a Mano dedicated a water reservoir project in the community of Maldonado, Bolivia. Mano a Mano staff started work on this water project in February 2017. This project makes it possible for 96 subsistence farm families (about 600 people) to irrigate 250 acres of cropland and to water their livestock, as well as having water for household use.

Take a drone tour of the reservoir taken on the day of its dedication in March:

New Additions and Visitors to Mano a Mano’s Center for Ecological Agriculture in October

This video from Mano a Mano’s Center for Ecological Agriculture is a good representation of what happens at the CEA in a typical week. The CEA provides training and tools for Bolivian farmers to improve food security and nutrition.

Video translation: At the start of the month of October we added new members to our Center for Ecological Agriculture with the birth of nine pigs. We also received a visit from fifth grade students from the school Carlos Paredo Sanoval from the municipality of Sacaba. At the beginning of the tour we presented our atajados (small water ponds). They are a means of storing water in times of rain to sustain agricultural production and provide water for irrigation.

1:16 – Demonstrating drip irrigation.

1:25 – Also demonstrated is the hydroponic garden – an alternative form of producing water. I am going to show you. It is like this. (Kids: oohh…wow).

The Center for Ecological Agriculture is an open book for learning.

*Kid being interviewed – Alejando Camacho, 11 years old, from Carlos Peredo Sandoval school – “What I have learned is to take care of the environment. I have learned to make fertilizer. Also, I have learned about plants and irrigation.”

2019 in Photos

None of our work would be possible without the support of many dedicated supporters in the US, Bolivia, and elsewhere; we thank you for helping us get here! Check out a few pictures of what we were able to do together in 2019: