The heartbreaking reality for thousands of children in Managua, Nicaragua is that they will never be able to attend school because their families desperately need them to supplement the family income by selling goods on the streets. What if it were possible for some of these children not only to attend school, but to also receive health care, have after school tutoring, eat a healthy mid day meal, and have access to cultural programs including dance and art? What if it was possible for these little ones to have a future that will not force their children into street selling?
A fully operational project called The Star Bakery (Panaderia Estrella) is being created by Foundation NITCA, a well-established community based organization, located in Barrio Los Laureles Sur, one of the poorest neighborhoods in Managua, Nicaragua. The foundation has a 10-year record of providing very successful programs in the community- including preschool education (including healthy food), scholarships for secondary schools, health care, small-scale community vegetable gardens, and cultural programs.
The Star Bakery project is part of a new approach for supporting nonprofit foundations since consistent funding for charitable organizations is becoming increasingly difficult to maintain in third world countries. The goal is to provide affordable and needed services or products for the community through self sustaining businesses which produce profits that are rolled back into the nonprofit’s programs. Sustainable programs like this one are key to the future of nonprofit foundations. Parents employed by the Star Bakery will no longer need to have their children selling on the streets and bakery profits will sustain NITCA programs for all children it serves.
The mission of NITCA is to improve the quality of life for children by reducing the need for child labor. Detailed information may be found on the NITCA website at http://www.fundacionnitca.org.