Thursday, October 25, 2018

***International Institute - United Nations Day - Los Brigadistas***

We were asked to present our programs from the San Pedro Itzican area to the students of the International Institute of Chapala. The day happened to be United Nations Day on the campus.  We were asked to close the day of exhibitions with our presentation.  Doris Wakeman, Kari Higgins, Anita Torres Guerrero and the Brigadistas were present for the event.

International Institute

Through our curriculum and school environment, we aim to foster well-rounded scholars who not only feel responsibility toward the global community, but also take action to become active, ethical citizens of this community. Such global citizens should be versed in languages in order to communicate with their neighbors, and also the arts to communicate their messages in a profound, creative variety of media.

     Students assemble in the auditorium for our presentation

Life East of Mezala

We first established the location.

When we first arrived we asked the community what they wanted.

We responded by helping create programs that echoed their requests:

It was a beautiful day of exchange and mutual admiration.

Anita shared a very emotional and personal account of life East of Mezcala.

Mathew closed the presentation with an explanation of how the student's work will influence
and help the needy communities.

Special thanks go to:


and all the students of the International Institute for their continued support with our programs.

Saturday, October 13, 2018

************* New Sewing Program in San Pedro Itzican**********

 Brad's Garden Rose

Beauty.  Simple.  True.

These are words that I use to describe the people and projects of San Pedro Itzican.
At first glance you see littered streets, poverty, incomplete housing.  But look beyond the obvious and you see warm, caring people who want better for their families.  Who are willing to work and learn to create opportunities that weren't there yesterday.  Their plight may seem bleak.  They are resilient.

 Hair and Make Up

Our friend Linda Marsh has joined the Hair and Make Up team.  Linda comes via our friend and Maestro Rodrigo of Innovations Salon in Ajijic.  She has been offering free hair cuts to the women, men and children of San Pedro Itzican.  Welcome aboard Linda!

Maestro Rodrigo with some of his make up students


While the parents took class, I worked with the children.  This day we drew and  colored, learning the concepts of sharing, politeness and respect.

 Music Class in the Vivero

Meanwhile in the nursery, Yannin held music class.  We are hoping for a concert presentation from the music students soon.

 Los Brigadistas in San Juan Tecomatlan

We also ventured to San Juan Tecomatlan, site of our newest Brigadista office and new plant nursery location.  We are reviewing several lots for the nursery location where we plan to grow food from seed...enough to fill the home garden requests of the people of San Pedro Itzican, and also enough plants for sale to the general public to generate income.

Sewing Program

Another program the community asked for was a Sewing Program.  We've been collecting used sewing machines and materials just for this purpose.  

Doris Wakeman generously took time to check out the donated sewing machines and made sure they were all working properly.

Our volunteer teacher is Sophia, proprietress of Fiaga in Ajijic, on Colon,

This past week the first class finally arrived...

along with a surprising number of women students.

The potential of this program to provide needed family income is huge.


Our gardens continue to grow, as do our spirits and inspiration.

Brigadista Truck, up and running!

Our Brigadista truck is complete.  We've taken care of repairs, tires, clutch adjustments, rear headlights, etc.  We even have new official stickers for the truck.  Now the Brigadas can come and go with a minimum of risk on our roads and highways.

Rocio's Orchid

And lastly, because sometimes beauty cannot be described,
but must be seen, I gift you Rocio's Orchid. 
The orchid was alive but not blooming until this year.

“I am in awe of flowers. 
Not because of their colors, 
but because even though they 
have dirt in their roots, 
they still grow. 
They still bloom.” 

D. Antoinette Foy