S.H.A.R.E. News 2021

Celebrating International Youth Day

S.H.A.R.E.’s projects often include young men and women who receive an education, leadership training or skills training for small rural enterprise. Many youth receive inputs and training for small agriculture projects. S.H.A.R.E.’s projects include youth to help feed farm families, strengthen rural communities and for some a the SHARE project may even prevent migration.

Another Irrigation Project in Bolivia Completed

37 families farming 35 hectares of land, growing potatoes, broad beans and corn will benefit from a irrigation system installed in the community of Fulsuri Morochata, Bolivia. The project constucted two reservoirs to capture and hold water and a water distribution  system with water sprinklers. This system replaces dug canals with a much more efficient system for irrigating crops. Soil erosion will be reduced greatly and families may be able to farm a bit more land. 

Technology in Education - S.H.A.R.E. receives 2 grants to enhance student learning

“The best way to fight poverty is to empower people through access to quality education.” John Legend

 

Access to technology in remote areas is improving education for S.H.A.R.E.’s high school scholarship students.

S.H.A.R.E. has partnered with TIES.charity (Technology In Education Society) to test technology to assist high school students from homes without electricity continue their education during the pandemic.  

With inspiration and financial support from TIES.charity, 10 NowLight units are now providing electricity in homes in Sarstun, Guatemala for Ak’ Tenamit School students.

The NowLight kits are hand-powered generators with integrated light, battery and USB charging port, satellite light, and solar panel.  

Having electricity in these homes is a game changer for students and their families..

OECTA (Ontario English Teachers' Association) provides funds for a solar powered computer lab at a small school for students in grades 6, 7 and 8 and high school.

The small solar powered computer lab has 7 laptop computers, batteries, a projector, a printer and fans. Thank you OECTA!

Project Update: We are proud of the work shown in this video summary of S.H.A.R.E.'s projects in Mayan communities in Guatemala with partner APROSARSTUN.

Small Grants Make a Difference

A big thank you to Women’s Inter-Church Council  of Canada, WICC, for a small grant to assist 22 women in El Salvador to have a small agriculture enterprise to supply their families’ food and some income. The second component of the project will be to bring an anti violence message to the men, women and youth in the municipality.

And thank you to OECTA, Ontario English Catholic Teachers’ Association for a grant to supply a solar powered computer lab that will be used by students in the Sarstun area of Guatemala. 

And thank you to ETFO (Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario) for a small grant to provide a solar pump, pipes and storage tanks so that a small community in Guatemala can have water. This convenience will save a lot of time spent fetching water for household use. Children will not miss school to fetch water each day. The project is similar to a completed project called, “Bringing Water to a Mayan Community”. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KIFp_y2FEDU

50 Field Wells Funded in Cambodia

The field wells that S.H.A.R.E. has provided for the poor rural families of Cambodia have a huge impact. Families can grow rice all year round, have water for crops and clean water for household use. Families can pass on water to a neighbour, afford medicine and education for their children. The gift of a field well ($380) keeps giving year after year. It enables families to make a living and have hope for the future.  It enables a family to rise out of poverty in Cambodia. 

Irrigation Projects in Bolivia

For many years, small scale farmers in Bolivia have used rustic land canals to bring water from springs and lagoons down the slopes to small fields of beans, potatoes and corn. The system allowed for some production in the dry season but was very inefficient. Up to 65% of the water was lost and the precious soil was eroded as the water rushed down the dug canals and flooded fields. 

To improve family production and income for 66 farming families, two irrigation projects have recently been completed. These projects were implemented with shared funding and with the collaborative efforts of a local municipality and a southern partner. SHARE’s partner hired an irrigation specialist, the local municipality supplied heavy equipment and trucks, and the farmers provided labour. During the process local people called promoters were trained to help maintain the new irrigations systems.

 Two large reservoirs were built and over 2,000 metres of irrigation pipes were used and many sprinkler systems installed in the two irrigation projects.

 

Seeds and Tools for Needy Honduran Families after Hurricane Disasters

The damage to crops and homes from back to back hurricanes brought much despair to Honduran families last Novemeber. (Scroll down to see the photos below – “Catastrophic Events – Back to Back Hurricanes”).

The hurricanes brought flooding, landslides and high winds. Thousands of families lost their staple crops and had homes destroyed. These Honduran families were aleady  experiencing hard times due to the pandemic. Thanks to generous donor support, SHARE was able to send funds for seeds and tools for many families.

Young boys are usually hungry guys. These boys are smiling because they can help shell the bags of corn seeds that SHARE provided so families would have food security. These peasant farm families grow native seeds (Creole seed) which enables them to save the seed and plant it year after year. This is a common practice in developing countries because low income farmers cannot afford to purchase seeds every year. 

Pilot Solar Project to Assist Education

This is the NowLight from Deciwatt (https://deciwatt.global/); a human powered light and charging station for off-grid electricity. Viaduct Foundation (https://viaductfoundation.ca/) has partnered with S.H.A.R.E. Agriculture Foundation (https://shareagfoundation.org/) to test the NowLight at the Ak’ Tenamit school (https://thegtfund.org/) in Sarstun, Guatemala. [Video by Deciwatt.]

S.H.A.R.E. scholarship students learning at home in communities without electricity will recharge tablets donated by Luke Four Foundation.

Thank you Luke Four Foundation and Viaduct Foundation for collaborating to improve student education. “The best way to fight poverty is to empower people through access to quality education.” Quote: John Legend. 

International Development Week- Go for the Goals - The Sustainable Development Goals

Thank You, Better Farming Magazine

S.H.A.R.E. thanks the folks at Better Farming magazine for running our ad in their February issue. This magazine is “a trusted source for insight on issues and trends affecting Ontario’s agriculture industry.”  

S.H.A.R.E. was an intiative of a small group of farmers in Peel county in Ontario. Read about S.H.A.R.E.’s history and early years https://shareagfoundation.org/history/

www.betterfarming.com

Grants For Needy Rural Schools in Guatemala

These Guatemalan “TIMBITS” are so cute! A grant from OECTA (Ontario English Catholic Teachers’ Association) for school supplies included soccer shirts and soccer balls. These little ones are very proud.

Those concrete sinks look heavy! These handwashing sinks will improve santitation at 5 schools in remote rural communities in Guatemala. The pilas de concreto were loaded into a boat, transported up streams then carried into the communities. The grant also included funds to purchase 10 teachers’ desks and white boards. Thanks Ontario English Catholic Teachers Association for the grant. Another grant from OSSTF (Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation) provided books and dicationaries for 6 schools. 

These small grants make a difference!

SHARE'S NEWS IN 2020

327 Gardens in Haiti!

In spite of restrictions during the pandemic, SHARE’s partner in Haiti has been able to implement the garden component of the SHARE project with great results. 327 gardens have been planted and are now producing  a bounty of vegetables – onions, spinach, peppers, yams, papaya, okra, beans and corn! Garden technicians hired in the project visit each gardener to assist, teach and encourage the beneficiaries.

Emmeline’s testimonial: “I don’t think you can imagine what this garden has done for me. I just got back from selling spinach and I’m about to sell a few of these green papaya which people buy to cook “legim”. These three papaya trees are helping me so much right now. I plan to plant and grow even more papaya trees to expand my business. This garden makes me very happy!

Catastrophic Events - Back to Back Hurricanes

Two hurricanes hit Central America in November causing flooding and landslides. Many farm families in Honduras in SHARE’s project areas lost their crops of corn and beans, the staple foods they rely on to feed their families. These back to back hurricanes brought more hardship for families already suffering from high rates of poverty, crime and and violence. (Photo credit to Sean Hawkey and the Telegraph.)

S.H.A.R.E. will assist by funding seeds and tools for some farmers in Honduras to replant staple crops to feed their families.

“We can’t do everything, but we can do something.” And the something we do, provides HOPE.  

 

Hello S.H.A.R.E. Golfers!

After 20 annual in person tournaments, we were challenged as to how we could run our event this year. As we all know, 2020 is a year of many new experiences, so we decided to create a virtual tournament! Following are the results of our first ever SHARE Virtual Golf Tournament which closed August 31. More info…

Photo Review of S.H.A.R.E.'s Work in the Summer of COVID-19

SHARE is very grateful for the skilled management of SHARE’s local partners who are implementing our projects in Bolivia, Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala and Haiti. During the pandemic they had  many challenges but found ways to adapt to continue to provide resources and training to help with food security in many needy rural communities. 

The S.H.A.R.E. Logo

The SHARE logo was created in 1982 by Mark Koudys, a third year Graphic Design student at Sheridan College, Oakville. The hand, or human element in the design, represents fertility, protection and care. The hand supports the stem, but allows the fruit to grow on its own, while the seed is left in the careful attention of the holder – the S.H.A.R.E.  Agriculture Foundation.

Increasing Micro Credit Fund with Grant from Campbell Webster Foundation

A grant to SHARE from the Campbell Webster Foundation will provide funds for the small loans for young producers in El Salvador to start or improve food production. The loans will be paid back into an existing micro credit fund that is managed by SHARE’s partner. Young farmers will learn business management, agro ecology and will be assisted with marketing. The young producers are very grateful for this opportunity. Young people face many challenges in El Salvador – poverty and gang violence and lack of employment opportunities. 

Irrigation Project Completed in Bolivia

Farmers in Bolivia worked to complete an irrigation project that will  improve food production and income for families. The existing irrigation system was cleaned and repaired. New hoses and mobile sprinklers were added to prevent erosion on the steep slopes. Improved varieties of seed potatoes were distributed to improve production of this staple crop and potato storage facilities were improved. Soil fertility was improved by  introducing the nitrogen fixing crop called tarwi.

Thank You Gay Lea Foundation!

The Gay Lea Foundation donated funds for a project in El Salvador for young farmers to produce fruits and vegetables to improve family income and food security. In the project the agriculture specialist supports the producers, teaching and advising on ecological, low cost ways of production and financial management. Thank you Gay Lea Foundation for your valuable support.

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Grant from ETFO and OECTA

SHARE thanks the Elementary Teachers Federation of Ontario (the ETFO Humanity Fund) and to Ontario English Catholic Teachers Association, (OECTA Education Aid Committee) for a grant to support those in need during the pandemic. Beneficiaries in Guatemala will receive seeds to plant their staple crop for food security and some emergency assistance to feed families in this world-wide health crisis. 

Thank You Cullen's Foods!

Thank you, Cullen’s Foods for your sponsorship!

Read about Cullen’s foods direct collaboration with farmers in Canada and their support for S.H.A.R.E.’s projects at www.cullen’sfoods.com.

“Act local, think global: That is why we earmarked 1% of total sales to benefit S.H.A.R.E. Agriculture Foundation’s projects in South and Central America, which promote sustainable agriculture and education in remote rural communities.”..

S.H.A.R.E. is Growing

S.H.A.R.E. is growing! To meet our organization’s needs, the S.H.A.R.E. Board of Directors have filled the following volunteer positions: Executive Director, Donor Relations, Corporate Fund Raiser and Chief Financial Officer. Great gratitude to these skilled and willing volunteers. 

2019

S.H.A.R.E. ends 2019 with great gratitude to all our donors, sponsors and volunteers. THANK YOU for your donations, your encouragement and support!  Here is a quick review of some of the 2019 SHARE projects.

Donation from OPSEU

For the second year the Social Justice Fund of OPSEU has donated funds to SHARE for the renovation of a run down building and site to create an agriculture training centre in El Salvador. When the building and the grounds are repaired and renovated, SHARE’s partner will  bring members of their organization, small scale farmers and their youth members from all across the country, to the agriculture training school to attend modules of classes in agro ecology.  SHARE thanks OPSEU for their generous donation.

30th Annual Dinner Dance

Three hundred supporters attended the annual SHARE dinner dance on November 2, 2019 at the Embassy Grand Convention Centre in Brampton. A big thank you to all who attended, to all who sponsored tables, and donated items for the silent and live auction. Special thank you to the fund raising committee and other volunteers for all their work to make this night so successful.

Impact of a Field Well

The field wells that SHARE has provided for the poor rural families of Cambodia have a huge impact. Families can grow rice all year round, have water for crops and clean water for household use. Families can pass on water to a neighbour, afford medicine and education for their children. The gift of a field well ($350) keeps giving year after year. It enables families to make a living and have hope for the future.  It enables a family to rise out of poverty in Cambodia. 

THANK YOU BOB!

After 28 years of dedicated service as a SHARE project manager, Bob Thomas retired. Carl Fletcher presents Bob Thomas with a plaque that honours Bob’s volunteer efforts with SHARE. SHARE is very appreciative of his hard work and dedication. The SHARE recipients have benefited immensely by Bob’s enthusiastic support to better their lives. “SHARE has changed my life in many positive directions for which I am extremely grateful”, commented Bob. (See SHARE newsletter, Nov. 2018)

With Heartfelt Gratitude

We cannot thank our donors enough!

SHARE will start a new 3 year project with 4 partners on September 1, 2019. This project will support families in Haiti, El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala in the areas of food production, knowledge and skills and well-being in an integrated, long term approach.

SHARE thanks all donors and foundations for their generosity to enable this work. Special thanks to Willowool Foundation and Barrett Family Foundation for their continuing support.

We are calling this project “Families and Land”. 

Working on Sustainable Development Goals

SHARE’s efforts support several of the United Nations goals for eliminating poverty and achieving equality by 2030.

Women Deliver Conference

In case you missed it…In early June, the Women 2019 Deliver conference in Vancouver brought over 7,000 people from all over the world to share knowledge about gender equality, equality, and the health, rights and wellbeing of girls and women.

“Canada is at the forefront of the global efforts toward gender equality,” said Minister Maryam Monsef.

“Hosting the Women Deliver Conference enables Canada to convene world leaders and advocate top share promising practices, coordinate our efforts and strengthen the movement for gender equality.” Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Support for Irrigation Systems for Food Security

SHARE thanks all donors for donations for irrigation for small scale farming families struggling to feed their families in Honduras, El Salvador and Bolivia. This project goes a long way to support food security for needy families. Special thanks to the Campbell Webster Foundation and the Roncalli Foundation and all donors for supporting the “Pumps for Food” project to purchase irrigation systems for the Dry Corridor of Central America. (Donate on SHARE’s Canada Helps web site.)

SHARE's Valued Support Avoids Migration - Poverty, Gangs and Drought

Many families in Central America who are facing poverty, hunger, violence and lack of opportunities continue to leave home and migrate to the Mexico-US border.
“Why are people leaving their home countries?
Globe and Mail: Stephanie Nolan, Globe and Mail, Nov. 2018.
“Many of those in the migrant caravan are fleeing violence: Honduras and El Salvador are two of the five most violent countries in the world. They, and Guatemala, are highly unequal, with entrenched networks of corrupt politicians and police. Much of Honduras and El Salvador are carved up into territory controlled by gangs that forcibly recruit young people. The migrants are also seeking better economic opportunities.
Many are from impoverished agricultural areas where their ability to survive is being undermined by climate-change-related events including severe drought and flooding. A coffee fungus has ravaged the staple crop in many farming communities in Honduras and Guatemala. Starving farmers head first for the cities in their home countries, but when they face extortion and violence from gangs there, feel they have no choice but to flee north.”

CARLOS GARCIA RAWLINS/REUTERS, Stephanie Nolan. Photos Jeff Abbott, Adrees Latif/Reuters, Keith Dannemiller/OM.

Eco Stoves Donated to Cook Nutritional Supplement for School Children in Guatemala

SHARE has received several generous donations for eco stoves that will be used in the remote communities of Sarstun Guatemala to cook the nutritional supplement provided for the children at their schools. This program addresses the need in Guatemala to stem under – nutrition that results in stunting and health problems.  These stoves use less wood and protect the health of the women cooking the supplement. Thank you to Ontario English Catholic Teachers Association (OECTA), Elementary Teachers Federation of Ontario (ETFO), Ontario Teachers’ Federation (OTF), Retired Teachers of Ontario (RTO) and Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation (OSSTF) for donations to the eco stove project!

2018

A note from Senator Rob Black

“I was pleased to attend the fundraising dinner and dance on Saturday evening in Brampton in support of their efforts and bring greetings on behalf of the Senate of Canada. I enjoyed catching up with Allan Thompson, Mayor of the Town of Caledon as well as my good friends Art and Jean Bennett of Bayfield, ON. (on left) Joining us in the picture is the Honourable Sylvia Jones, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport & Minister of Community Safety and Correctional Services (on right) and Joe Gray, Treasurer of S.H.A.R.E. (second from right) who was recognized for longstanding volunteer service”.

It was a wonderful evening of fundraising in support of a great agriculture foundation. Congratulations to all involved! Senate of Canada – Senate of Canada – Sénat du Canada

Food Security Projects in Haiti

Generous donations have resulted in a new partnership in Haiti, Fall 2018

Thanks to funds from donations at the Ontario Federation of Agriculture’s annual meetings men and women in Haiti are growing nutritious fruits and vegetables and tending goats. These donations helped provide irrigation, a “Food Forest” (fruit trees), seeds, tools, and goats to SHARE’s projects in Haiti. Read more in the Nov. 2018 newsletter, “Addressing Malnutrition in Haitian Families”.

Thanks to Copetown Lions and Volunteers

A special thank you to the Copetown Lions Club and their “chef”, Dan Brigham, Peter Finlayson (in photo on left), auctioneer Jim McCartney and the dinner committee and the Copetown United Church volunteers for the very successful dinner in support of SHARE. A special thanks to Frank and Matt Regan who again donated from the Lions’ designated fund. Thanks for many years of support to SHARE and those early volunteers John and Edna Yovanov, Peter Lindley (in photo on right) and Jane Collins!
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