Waves of Hope is located in a small community named El Manzano #1. Our community is located about 35 minutes northwest of Chinandega, in the El Viejo region.
The population of El Manzano #1 is comprised of approximately thirty-six families and just over two hundred residents. Many extended families live together so it is not uncommon to have ten or more people living together in one home. A few families have running water but most just have a hand dug well with a bucket system.
Power lines only reach about 1/2 of the community; so many families still live without power.
Most families subside off a basic diet of rice, beans, tortillas and eggs; however, many suffer from malnutrition due to a lack of money to buy these basic provisions or other nutritional foods such as fruits and vegetables.
The local school is at the heart of El Manzano #1. It serves as a primary school for the community (preschool and grades 1-6) but it is here that many important social and town gatherings take place. This year we have 70 children attending classes daily.
There is currently no full time high school in the area but students do have the opportunity to attend high school classes once a week on Sundays at the elementary school and over two hundred students attend these classes. Waves of Hope recently broke ground on a high school that will be opening in January 2014.
Our partner resort, El Coco Loco is the main source of employment within the community. Coco Loco currently employs 20 locals and also supports over 13 additional women through jewelry and spa clubs. Others work in fishing and some seasonally in agriculture. Care-taking beach properties is another common source of income. A major goal of Waves of Hope is to increase employment and income generation opportunities in the area.