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by Ugochi Obidiegwu (pictured third from left), 2022 Innovation and Design fellow 

Joining HOPE International as an innovation and design fellow, I was curious about HOPE’s operations. I particularly wanted to see if the amazing things I saw on the website happened in real life.

Therefore, when I saw there was an opportunity to see the work of Esperanza International, HOPE’s microfinance partner in the Dominican Republic (D.R.), I signed up. And I was not disappointed. HOPE’s method of Christ-centered economic development works.  

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Elizabeth Mutosa says that her neighborhood, Section 10, in Roan, Zambia, has gained a reputation for being a challenging place to live. “Section 10 has been characterized by … activities, like drinking beer, early marriages for young girls, and other activities that rob the peace of every child,” she shares. “There are vulnerable people that need to be helped.”

Despite these challenges, the sound of children singing praises to God can be heard filling the neighborhood. These children attend Elizabeth’s preschool, which she established in her own home.

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Lance Wood, HOPE Board Member

by Lance Wood, HOPE board member

This post was originally shared in 2018 and was updated and re-published in July 2022.

Fourteen years ago, my wife, Jeanie, and I were looking for organizations that our family could partner with. As believers, we were searching not just for a nonprofit but for a ministry that does good work while sharing the Gospel. And as someone who built a career in the accounting field, I sought an organization making the biggest possible impact per giving dollar.

HOPE International checked both of those boxes—and more.

Here are the top 10 reasons why I am all in with HOPE: Continue Reading…

Simon RurihafiSimon Rurihafi (pictured right) is a coffee farmer who owns 350 trees—but he almost gave up on farming them.

In Burundi, the hurdles facing coffee farmers like Simon are many: The labor is demanding, farming techniques and expectations for bean quality have shifted in recent years, and there are gaps in the global supply and demand chains, making it difficult for smallholder farmers to connect with buyers at competitive prices. Simon recalls, “I thought of abandoning coffee in the past because of these challenges!”

On top of this, Burundian farmers have very few options to access financial services or training to update their farming practices, purchase additional land, plant more trees, or connect with buyers.

As a result, farmers have felt stuck, alone, and without options.

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Clarisa Huamani’s dream is for her three children to have the opportunities she didn’t. At a young age, she was adopted by a family in Lima, Peru. Her adoptive parents often forced her to stay home, and she was never really accepted as part of the family. She longed for belonging and the chance to work and make her own way.

Investing in family

At a low point in her life, Clarisa discovered the business idea that could help supplement her husband’s income. After she lost her father to COVID-19 in June 2020, a neighbor gifted her a pair of guinea pigs and a chicken to help her focus on something else. Once Clarisa realized the animals could be a source of income for her family, she found new purpose. She began to breed and sell guinea pigs, ducks, and chickens, finding new clients through word of mouth.

My first priority is my children–for their health, that they would have a profession and be able to provide for themselves.

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“I can connect with HOPE on multiple levels,” says Marcia Malzahn (pictured above), laughing.

Born in Nicaragua, Marcia was a teenager when she and her family had to move to the Dominican Republic (D.R.) as refugees. Her time there helps her feel a special connection to HOPE’s work with Esperanza International, HOPE’s partner in the D.R. Continue Reading…