Philanthropy Friday: Why I Will be Traveling to Nicaragua in March

Each Friday, the another jennifer blog shares stories of those who incorporate philanthropy into their everyday lives – personally and professionally – in a creative and unique way. If you have a story you’d like to share, please contact Jennifer. You can view past posts from the series here.

jennifer-barbour-nica

When I started this blog and created a category for Philanthropy, I had no idea where it would take me. I knew I wanted to explore the topic of giving back and what it means. I’ve since created my Philanthropy Friday series and Giving Pledge. I also became a member of the Global Team of 200, a highly specialized group of Mom Bloggers for Social Good members who focus on maternal health, children, hunger, and women and girls.

Today, I am elated and honored to announce that I will be traveling to Nicaragua on an insight trip with WaterAid America from March 16 – 23. I will be proudly representing Mom Bloggers for Social Good.

Along with a representative from WaterAid America, I will be traveling with a journalist from New York and a photographer from Mexico. I will be the first blogger to accompany WaterAid America on an insight trip. We will be concentrating on telling the stories of WaterAid’s work in Nicaragua, as it is not a program that has been highlight much in the past.

I’ve written posts about the need for clean water and sanitation on the blog before. I’ve specifically talked about WaterAid’s programs as well, as a donor and an advocate.

Nicaragua

WaterAid established its program in Nicaragua, its first in Central America, in 2011. They work in one of the poorest areas of the country, the North Atlantic Mosquito coast. Just 20% of the people in this area have access to safe water and sanitation.

Our home base will be in Bilwi (otherwise known as Puerto Cabezas), but we will travel about two hours each day on some of the worst roads in the world to visit with the indigenous communities in which WaterAid works. I think what I am most excited about is the opportunity to get to know some of the people in these communities.

Our basic plan is to take the time to talk with people and see what kind of effect WaterAid’s work has had in their lives. Rather than move from village to village, we want to spend some time in the areas we visit so we can capture the full story. We will hone in on community empowerment (especially women), job skills training for at risk youth, and some of the realities of living in this area of Nicaragua.

We will also be in Nicaragua for World Water Day (March 22) and will have some fun activities planned to celebrate. 

I am extremely excited for this trip and hope to incorporate video and photography, along with my writing, while I am there. Because we will be in such a remote area, I will not have internet access throughout the day. Admittedly, this makes me a bit nervous, since I will not be readily available in case my kids need me for any reason. (We’re always moms first, right?) I’m also hoping I don’t get car sick. The description of the roads on which we will be traveling is interesting, to say the least!

I will do my best to post in the evenings. One of my thoughts is to record a video diary at the end of each day and post it to my YouTube channel and the blog. I will be sure to share photos and updates on all my social media channels (you can find links in the header at the top of the page) whenever I can. You can follow along on Twitter using the hashtag #WaterAidNica.

I’ll write a bit more about Nicaragua and WaterAid prior to the trip. Feel free to ask questions about the trip or the program in the comments, if you have any.

In the meantime, watch this video to find out more about WaterAid’s work in Nicaragua.

Read the trip announcements:

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Comments

  1. says

    So. Exciting. And such a trip for someone like you. Someone brave, kind and helpful.
    Take Bonine! It’s non-drowsy if you just take one. Dramamine always makes me weird. It will help with the car!
    I really can’t wait to hear all about this.
    Tamara recently posted..And The Award Goes To..My Profile

  2. says

    I cannot even begin to tell you how excited I am for you. And jealous! I will be waiting anxiously for your daily updates! Oh, you are going to have such a great trip!!!
    Alexa recently posted..DefeatedMy Profile

  3. says

    Jen, I have chills – like big crazy chills from reading this. You are so clearly answering your calling by the things you do and what your write about. We are so lucky to have YOU as our messenger to help us understand and raise awareness for the issues out there – and to encourage us to help any way you can. So many of us are more open hearted and generous – because of YOU. And this trip? I know you will come back with amazing information and insight for us.You are my hero in so many ways.
    Ilene recently posted..Maybe This Could Be BigMy Profile

  4. says

    Clean water is so important and such a basic right. We have traveled extensively throughout the Caribbean and South America, even into the jungles and everywhere you see water rights being sold to large corporations. I am glad you are working with this group and I want to see how I can get involved too. stopping by from #LOBS
    Carla recently posted..The Sound Of My Mother’s VoiceMy Profile

  5. says

    I normally don’t get involved in these comment threads. But I have to say, after reading this post and seeing all the good you can potentially effect through your trip, I just want you to know how much I respect and admire what you do! Thank you for being another beacon of light in what is all too often a dark, dark world.
    CNA Journal recently posted..CNA Exam Prep Questions – Part 1My Profile

  6. says

    OH JENNIFER!!!!!! I am SO glad you shared THIS one with me!!!! This. IS. HUGE!!!!!! Oh girl- this is just perfect. I am THRILLED that you will be on this amazing journey as the first blogger to experience and take part in such an incredible mission. You were chosen because of the integrity with which you share and promote the greater good, my friend. And I am SO proud to know you!!!

    I love the idea of a video diary!!! Good Lord, you will probably be too wiped out from all the puking on the roads to write and do much work at night. LOLOLOL (Had to)

    And yes- moms first always, my sweet friend. And yet, there are times DADS can take the wheel and manage while moms do important WORK WITH A PURPOSE. Inadvertently, you are being the BEST mom you can be, by setting an amazing example for your children. THAT, my friend is huge in itself.

    This? Freaking AWESOME!!!!!!!!! I just want to shout from the rooftops!!!! WOOHOO!!!!!!!
    Chris Carter recently posted..Dive Deeper- finding deep faith beyond shallow religionMy Profile

  7. says

    Just wanted to stop by – you’re making a difference! This trip sounds wonderful!! I don’t get a lot of extra time to read blogs right now, but I will try to take this to read these updates – this issue is so important. Glad you’re going and glad you’re changing lives. :)
    Cyndi recently posted..Explaining my Absence and TeachingMy Profile

  8. says

    Hi Jennifer,
    I read a post by ThirdEyeMom about your trip to Nicaragua. I live on Ometepe Island in Nicaragua and I’m really looking forward to following your updates and your projects. Nicaragua is the land of opportunity. There is so much we can do to help with just a little money and a lot of creativity. Thank you for taking an interest in Nicaragua. I don’t know if you have been following the posts about the Nicaraguan Canal Project, but if this really happens it will be an ecological disaster, not only destroying the water shed and Lake Nicaragua that feeds our surrounding area, but displacing people along the Atlantic coast, and destroying two turtle nesting areas. I am really worried. Have a wonderful time in Nicaragua. It is an amazing country.
    Gypsytoes recently posted..Weekly Photo Challenge: Speculating on PerspectiveMy Profile

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