Rotary Governor, District 4240 visiting composting latrines with Martha Castillo, Masaya Rotary and Alcance Nicaragua team.
Early Bird tickets (save $10) are available through through August 31. After that, please register by September 27.
The El Lllanito, Nicaragua water supply project team is putting this fundraiding event on for the Engineers without Borders San Francisco Professional chapter (EWB-SFP).
In August the Rotary Global Grant 1638377 Nicaragua – water supply project was approved.
The El Lllanito, Nicaragua water supply project EWB team is doing the engineering for the water supply system and is applying for a $6000 grant for the project from the chapter. The requirements to obtain the grant include chapter-wide fundraisers like this one.
The September 30th, walk (or bike) the Golden Gate Bridge to Sausalito – ferry back to San Francisco Ferry Building is modeled after very popular walks that the Livermore Rotary club has done. I’ve participated in several of them and this should be fun.
Our El Llanito Nicaragua water supply project team is working on our annual Engineers Without Borders – San Francisco Professional chapter annual fundraising gala, SFari 2017, at 111 Minna Gallery in San Francisco on Thursday, October 19th beginning at 7PM.
Our project team is also applying for a $6k grant for the water project from our chapter. The requirements we need to fulfill to obtain the grant include two chapter-wide fundraisers. We are launching these and would appreciate your support. Please consider donating or registering to participate in our September 30th, walk (or bike) the Golden Gate Bridge to Sausalito – ferry back to San Francisco Ferry Building. Ticket includes sandwich lunch with soft drink and ferry ticket.
Please share these with your network. For direct links to our online fundraisers see:
For the walk/bike across the Golden Gate Bridge take ferry back, see:
Engineers Without Borders is a nonprofit that focuses on sustainable engineering solutions to solve problems in developing countries. Our chapter (http://www.ewb-sfp.org/programspage/) specifically has seven project teams. This event goes to supporting all of our projects in these communities and we focus on the needs that were proposed to us which could be sanitation, healthcare, water access or a variety of other issues that developing world communities face.
I presented at our Rotary Club of Livermore on 7/26/17 on Rotary Global Grants In Action: Update, Composting Latrines Project, Nicaragua. I’m scheduled to present a similar talk to the Rotary Club of the Livermore Valley on 8/15/17.
In addition, we showed selected parts of this video of Daniel, removing compost from his composting latrine. He’s been using his since the 2010 deployment. He and his wife have participated in the community workshops for the 2014 and current projects, sharing their experience and answering questions.
I’ve been involved with Public Lab (and Grassroots Mapping) since 2010, when I wrote to Jeff Warren after seeing the diydrones post showing his map of a settlement outside Lima, Peru.
Public Lab is doing a Kickstarter campaign for aerial photomapping kits, from small lifting kites and balloons to the classic larger ones.
Jeff, Stewart Long, Mathew Lippincott, and others in the Public Lab community helped me learn simple aerial photo mapping techniques.
They also helped me start a grassroots mapping program to map the 40-acre Belize Open Source – Sustainable Development (BOSSD) site at high resolution to support site development work and progress reporting, to make this methodology accessible to local landholders, to engage schools to develop capabilities for educational and community mapping and make an initial set of maps.
I’ve not been as active with Public Lab due to other priorities, but I am looking to get back to it.
I was happy to. As my members page indicates, in part:
Patrick D. Coyle journals and writes memoir and personal stories about travel and sustainable development. His short memoir, Time of Your Life, won first place in Impressions, the Las Positas College 2015 anthology.
Other memoirs have been published in the Voices of the Valley: Word For Word, Encore, and First Press, California Writers Club Tri-Valley Branch anthologies (2015, 2013, and 2011); 4th Street Studio’s Livermore Wine Country Literary Harvest and Saturday Salon Literary Harvest anthologies.
I’ve been involved in critique since I joined the Tri-Valley Writers Branch in 2005 as a charter member. My good friend and mentor, Hector Timourian, led this group until he he handed it off. I picked up the responsibility to “clerk for us,” getting the announcement out to people about when the monthly meetings are coming up, letting people know who has submitted pieces, and showing up to facilitate the critique session discussion.
I’ve benefited from the feedback from others, reading the diversity of others pieces, and offering comments about what I liked, what gave me pause, and suggestions.
The monthly critique sessions also encourages me to write, to get a piece ready to submit for critique. I don’t like to be empty handed.
I joke with others that my only hope is that writing is a learnable craft.
We continue the STEM critique group through the summer.
I encourage you to write, to check out our CWC TVW branch, and to consider the critique groups as a way to improve your writing.
This was a very productive week. I’m leaving for Belize tomorrow, returning home Saturday mid-day.
With our NGO partner, Alcance Nicaragua, I visited all four of the communities that we are working in. I documented the construction status of our composting latrines in Los Alvarez and El Llanito, near Santa Lucia in Boaco; and El Tunel and La Prussia, near Masaya and Granada. In addition, we were able to talk to the builders, community organizers, and individual family members who are participating in the project. I captured suggestions and observations from the builders to consider for future design improvements.
While I was not able to meet with Martha Castillo Ocon, my point of contact for the Masaya Rotary club, we exchanged messages and she commented on the construction activities using WhatsApp.
I was also able to visit the new communities that Alcance is working in out of the Santa Lucia office: Coyota and El Riego; and out of the Masaya office: Coyolar, Playas Verdes, and Justo Romero. Alcance discussed their thinking on new strategies to engage these communities to meet their many needs which include water and ecological stoves.
Yesterday we left Santa Lucia where we been looking at the composting latrine project and Alcance’s work in new communities. We arrived at Alcance’s offices in Masaya around 11 am. They gave me an update on their work on the composting latrines in La Prussia and El Tunel and their Initiatives with new communities. After lunch together, the Santa Lucia group went back.
I went with Ricardo Rivera and Adriana Cruz to Comejen, one of the new communities they’re working in. We met with two families to discuss their experience with the pilot project for ecostoves. These ecostoves are so beneficial. They eliminate the health issue from having a kitchen and house full of smoke with it’s damaging effects on lungs, eyes, and other problems. In addition these stove burn much less fuel, so there’s less wood to gather or pay for. The women reported that they put out enough heat to cook very well. This is a demonstrated technology.
Alcance has deployed these ecostoves in communities around Santa Lucia for some time, and has documented substantial user experience about their benefits.
This morning I had one of the mangos they gave us with my breakfast.
I’ll be traveling to Belize, Wednesday 5/31 and be there till mid-day 6/3/17. Since I’ve been in Nicaragua for the composting latrine project, makes sense to stop in on my way home.
Here are photos from my last stop in December 2016, after our Engineers Without Borders assessment trip for the water supply project in El Llanito, Nicaragua. These selected ones show me with one of the improved cashews in our orchard, the caretaker’s residence, and our “tiny house,” where I usually stay.In the background can see our shed which covers our 40′ shipping container and part of our corrals. I’ve also include a photo of our cattle.
Belize Open Source Sustainable Development is a work in progress.
In October 2006, I got response from CA Secretary of State indicating we were incorporated and in June 20008, got letter from the IRS with the determination that Belize Open Source – Sustainable Development is exempt from Federal income tax and we are qualified to receive tax deductable donations.
Here is a bit about the story on the property. As the background page indicates:
I went to Belize in ’74 to help my parents, 2 younger brothers, and my sister relocate to a land development project between August Pine Ridge and San Felipe. My sister, the oldest of my siblings, is 11 years younger than me.
Yesterday, while visiting composting latrines under construction in Los Alvarez, Luz Dania, from our NGO partner Alcance Nicaragua, told me about a local community microloan program.
It started as pilot program in El Llanito using the eco-stoves project repayments to their own community based organization. Then they were able to get $5000 from Outreach International to expand the program. Loans are up to a maximum of $200 US, but many are much smaller. Loans are intended to address various problems and opportunities.
Applicants submit requests for review by a committee. They’ve made 39 loans and another 16 are being made for agricultural loans (as it’s now time for planting and seeding). Recipients pay 1% per month, but payments can be scheduled for a later time, for example when crops are harvested. The committee members really know the people in their communities so they can choose reliable people to loan to.
These photos show case where a family used their loan to add a new roof over existing rooms and an area at the back of their house and install new doors.
My wife, Kathy, and I have a portfolio of organizations we support. But based on my conversation with Luz, I want to focus on Kiva and microlending today.
Bill Clinton’s 2007 book, Giving, inspired me to consider how each of us can change the world. He takes the reader through the extraordinary and innovative efforts being made by companies, organizations, and individuals, to solve problems and save lives both “down the street and around the world.”
He urges each of us to seek out what, “regardless of income, available time, age, and skills,” we can do to help, to give people a chance to live out their dreams.
He writes of how people with modest amounts who are willing to contribute sometimes are often unsure their $25 or $50 will make a difference. Kiva, an NGO, has resolved that question in an innovative way by offering people a way to become microcredit lenders of as little as $25.
Clinton’s book and shout out for Kiva encouraged me to start loaning through Kiva on a monthly basis. I’ve been doing it since 2010 and it adds up. Most of the loans are attributed to team Belize Open Source Sustainable Development.
Here is an image of loans I made today, after a reminder from Kiva that I had a credit. Most of them are from repayments. I focus on women in Ag in Central America, but occasionally branch out. The adjacent chart shows the cumulative effect with 421 loans to date, and over $10.5k lent. It surprises me in a pleasant way.