About the Project

The Partner:
Focapaci-Fundase is a Roman Catholic organisation seeking to enhance living condiitons of the most vulnerable and building an inclusive society in El Alto, a neighbouring city to La Paz. Much of their work is with young people with disabilities, whilst the Focapaci side, with which we work, is with an urban agriculture programme designed to give women of El Alto a sustainable source of income, a sense of unity and an enhanced nutrition, a big challenge in Bolivia.

Where we work:
El Alto borders on the ‘bowl’ of La Paz, and is the fastest-growing city in the southern hermisphere. Over many decades, El Alto has grown considerably with migration from the countryside from those seeking work. Such rapid growth has exposed the lack of facilities in the city. With a high difficulty in finding work, often both parents will have to leave the house during the day, leaving their children alone. The urban agriculture scheme of El Alto allows the women to create a sustainable level of income whilst also staying at home, looking after their children. Focapaci works primarily with women because of they are so marginalised and sterotyped against in other sectors.

The Project:
The long-term outcomes of the project are:
-    - Women in the assoication are able to use their greenhouses to help their income, potentially as the          sole source.
    - The women involved in the project are able to use their greenhouses effectively without the need for outside support.
-    - The process of selling vegetables asa cooperative is sustainable with no need of outside.
-    - The greenhouses help aid towards a healthy and varied diet for the families of the association.

-    - The women of the assoication work together in cooperation and feel more empowered.

-       What have previous volunteers being doing?
   - We have established a client base of restaurants in La Paz, in which the producers can deliver their vegetables. At the moment the producers currently deliver to four restaurants, as well as the International Service office, on a weekly basis.
-    - Established a website for the group of producers, to provide potential clients with more information on their work.
-    - Helping the producers directly with construction and maintainence of their greenhouses. Until this moment, we have worked directly with x producers, helping to establish a relationship of trust and offering much-needed practical support.
-    - Completed research and the formatting of  nutrition documents, which are to be printed soon.
-    - Prepared and delivered workshops on Empowering the female producers we work with. Up to this point, we have given workshops on gender equality and conflict resolution, encouraging the producers to feel more untied and empowered in the work.
-    - Filmed and edited 5 video manuals, to be distributed to the producers showing them how to fulfil best practice within the greenhouse. We are currently planning on completing the 5 more this cohort.

-    - Supported the work of Focapaci, our partner project, in their greenhouses. Focapaci support the producers through providing investigations on new technologies and different growing techniques. Traditionally, we have spent at least one day per week offering direct support in their greenhouses.

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