By Kathryn Kopchik
LEWISBURG, Pa. — Sarah Woodard, a staff member from the Center for Development in Central America, will discuss "Challenges of Grass Roots Development in Nicaragua" Tuesday, April 24, at 7 p.m. in the Gallery Theater of the Elaine Langone Center at Bucknell University.
The presentation, which is free and open to the public, will feature a slide show and the sale of hand-made Nicaraguan crafts including jewelry, pottery, woodwork, leatherwork and more. Proceeds benefit the work of the non-profit CDCA.
The event is sponsored by the Bucknell Brigade, a volunteer organization that supports the CDCA's work in Nicaragua.
Woodard, who has lived in Nicaragua since 1996, will describe the efforts of the CDCA to alleviate poverty and create sustainable solutions to community problems as well as national and global conditions that affect poor communities in Nicaragua.
The CDCA is a non-profit organization seeking to address human needs created by poverty. The aid group organizes work in five separate areas: sustainable economic development, sustainable agriculture, education, health care, and appropriate technology.
The agency helps communities in the Western Hemisphere's second-poorest nation by helping them become self-sufficient, sustainable, democratic entities. Projects are focused in the city of Ciudad Sandino, just outside the capital city of Managua, where many people impacted by natural disasters have relocated.
Janice Butler, director of civic engagement and service-learning at Bucknell, said, "The University has a unique connection with the CDCA." Since 1999, volunteers from Bucknell have been working with the agency, first to provide aid to residents displaced by Hurricane Mitch, then to help build a permanent health clinic, and now to support the microenterprise and community development initiatives.
"Our students have gained so much from this partnership and the opportunity to learn from this organization that is doing important work day in and day out with people who have few resources," she said.
The Bucknell Brigade, an organization made of students, staff and faculty, annually raises tens of thousands of dollars to help maintain a free health clinic operated by the CDCA. The Brigade collects medicine, health and hygiene items, and sends delegations of 25 volunteers to help with microenterprise and health care twice a year.
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