Food for Families: Phase 1
In the communities of Caliche, Lomas del Aguila, Aguas de la Reina, Canchias, Las Lomitas, La Concepción, El Olvido, Las Flores, El Zapote, and so many more, we're surrounded by people we love. For over thirty years, we've struggled, prayed, laughed, cried, worshiped, learned, and grown as brothers, sisters, and friends.
When the government of Honduras closed its borders and established a national lockdown in mid-March, it quickly became apparent that our friends would be facing a food shortage crisis. This was a moment for Heart to Honduras to shift its focus from community development work to emergency relief.
In a matter of days, our team mobilized to procure food supplies and provide deliveries to 750 families in the region and communities we serve.
Despite restrictions on travel, several HTH employees were able to secure special permits, allowing them to go into the most vulnerable communities and hand deliver items such as rice, beans, flour, oil, pastas, and canned meats.
We celebrate the Lord's blessing and strength during the past few weeks, as our staff has worked tirelessly in this effort.
We're grateful for His protection in the face of unrest, for continued health, and for provision.
And we are humbled by the sacrificial and generous response of so many who love the Honduran people and who trust us with your resources as together we engage in God's work in the world.
Loaves, Fish, Corn & Plantains
Although Heart to Honduras is currently in "relief mode," it has quickly become evident that our ongoing work in Community Development has been critical at this time of crisis.
The focused efforts through the Communities of Holistic Impact program have proved invaluable as empowered and trained, unified local leaders have stepped up to guide and facilitate our efforts. Strong communities have responded wisely and methodically, drawing on what they have discovered about who they are and how they can work together to keep their villages safe and well.
We also see the beauty of continued sharing of assets. Even while receiving distributions of needed resources, our community members are asking the questions, "What do we have? How can we contribute?"
Much like in the Biblical account of the boy who brought his loaves and fish to Jesus, they are blessing their neighbors with whatever they've grown: beans and corn; yuca, plantains, and squash.
After a trip to Caliche and Doce de Marzo, Marvin Sorto, our Honduran administrative assistant shared:
The people in our communities are wonderfully special. As we share with them, we receive great love and kindness. Even when things are tough, they bring what they have and give to others.
We rejoice in the generosity, love, and empowerment of our brothers and sisters who teach us so much about our generous Father God!
If you have spent much time around Heart to Honduras, you know that *Collaboration* isn't just an important core value; it is part of the fabric of every aspect of our work. Realizing that together we are stronger, we've invested significantly in relationships with local municipalities.
The value of these relationships is more evident than ever during the COVID-19 crisis. Our extensive knowledge of the communities allows us to advise and support the work of the local government. We've coordinated with the mayor's office in order to prevent duplication of efforts.
First responders--members of the army, police force, and firefighters--have traveled alongside us throughout the distribution process, and we are providing protective equipment as they continue to serve the population in so many ways.
Food for Families: Phase 2
Now that food supplies have been distributed in all of the communities we serve, we are actively beginning Phase 2 of the Food For Families initiative, including another distribution, which families will receive 2-3 weeks after the first round.
With continued closed borders, uncertainty about the future, and rising food prices, however, we are compelled to do more, engaging with communities to provide more sustainable, lasting solutions.
Our staff, our community leaders, and local agricultural engineers are working together to establish a plan for immediate actions towards increased and collaborative local food production
Crops like corn, beans, yuca, and chayote have been identified as nutritional staples with a quick growing time. Through the provision of seeds, training, and fertilizer, we will walk alongside these communities as they improve and expand current practices to increase yield and provide more broadly for the needs of their own people.