In 2021, we were so happy with how the year ended. As we wrapped up December, our board began really looking forward to the next steps of what we aim to continue accomplishing at Footprints with Hope. We would love to share a few of those thoughts and goals with you, so you can come on board and support us in new ways!
2021 was the launch of our Luchadora program. The women really grew, and now they are using those skills to cut/style hair and earn an income. You can watch one of the testimonies of these women here. At Footprints with Hope, we plan to continue that program and build on it. One of the goals for 2022 is that in the program the women will also learn to do facials and nails. We also plan to bring the women from the 2021 program in to gain that skill as well, since it was not implemented during their time.
A second goal with the program is to grow how many women can attend. It only costs $250 for one woman to attend the program for the full 7 months! That cost includes paying for their transportation, the skilled Colombian professionals who teach the classes and skills, materials for the classes, materials for the skill trade (scissors, shampoos, etc), snacks served during the meetings and other small miscellaneous costs. In 2021 we had 30 women participate in this program. In 2022, we’d love to double that! At the very least, we’d like to be able to increase it to have an additional 10 women attend the program. You can help by donating at the link below.
Lastly, we hope to implement a small children’s program as a branch of the Luchadora program. Kids who would attend this would be the children of the mothers who are in the current program. We have the vision of teaching 2 skills to kids which can be used in multiple ways. Those skills are music and writing. The children are the future of Colombia. If they have a space to learn a skill (much like the women learning one), they begin to view their own future with more hope. Such as skill would be writing and/or music. As a result, that skill be turned into an income, but both are skills which help build confidence and give a child an activity to do. Such an activity would be an alternative to spending their time on the streets. We hope to implement this extension by June.
Clean water initiative
If you’ve followed us through the last year, you know we were able to place clean water for the first time ever in 3 communities! We were thrilled for this accomplishment. The joy comes from seeing such happiness and hope in those who have waited their whole lives for clean water to now have access to it. As we continue forward, we hope that we can place clean water in at least 2 more communities this year.
San Miguel has around 120 homes and Castillo has an estimated 120 as well. These two communities are also indigenous communities of the Zenú. We’ve met with their community leaders to discuss this. Ee hope to be able to make a difference of clean water inside those 240 homes as well in 2022. The process would be very similar to how we worked with Palmito and Bajo Grande in 2021. We will utilize exisiting (not-clean) water sources, filter them, run pipes and then clean water arrives at each home in a tank that will hold water and refill once or twice a week. Stay tuned as we work towards this goal!
Covid has definitely complicated the world of travel; however, we did take 2 teams to Colombia in 2021. This coming year we are already planning 4 teams to go! It is our desire to continue growing the amount of people that travel with us. In Colombia, there is no shortage of tasks that can be accomplished. Whether a team has an interest in construction, medical outreach, children’s programs, women’s programs or sports… we look forward to connecting more people to traveling with us.
Hope for this new year
Here at Footprints with Hope, we embrace the word “hope” for a variety of reasons. We carry hope to Colombia in every project and in every opportunity to interact with the communities. They give us hope through their generous spirits and loving souls. And we have hope in what we’d like to continue doing in the communities of Colombia.
Each of you are a part of it as well. Whether you support with supplies, prayer, funds, travel or events, you are a link in the chain of hope between the United States and Colombia. If you wish to support a woman in the Luchadora program or help communities gain access to clean water or help build the spread of the work in general, you can donate monthly or one time here. Thank you all for being a part of what we do! We cannot wait to see how 2022 unfolds.