This is a translation of an article that appeared in La Prensa over the weekend. It highlights our work with the Institute of John XXIII as we seek solutions to the housing crisis in Nicaragua. Read the original article here (Sp).
The institute of John XXIII was born inspired from the innovative ideas of Pope John XXIII, now beatified and then promoter of Second Vatican Council. Founded on July 22nd, 1961 at the University of Central America by then Jesuit priest Noel Antonio Garcia Castillo.
In its first years of work, The Institute was aimed towards the projects that would help in the development of students. Their first project was literacy promotion among laborers through night classes. Since the earthquake in Managua in 1972, attention has been put on natural disasters and national emergencies.
In 2011 the Institute celebrated 50 years of work in the human development field and the promotion of social justice. Specifically working in areas fundamental to human rights, facilitating the access to dignified housing and quality health services. The Institute also follows the process of human development in vulnerable sectors of the population.
First the Home
The Institute of John XXIII facilitates housing for Nicaraguan families of scarce resources, working within their economic capacities. There have been 3,723 homes built in 31 municipalities, benefiting 20,000 people.
First the Home offers four services: home construction, remodeling, technical assistance, and legal advice. The program has focused the last few years in the Matagalpa department, in the municipalities of Sebaco, San Isidro and Dario. In Managua, the focus has been on the Sandino municipalities, Tipitapa, Ticuantepe and Villa El Carmen.
The Institute of John XXIII also advocates for the promotion of health with the COMSALUD program, providing beneficiaries with access to integral health services.
Their principal goals are the supply of medicine, medical attention, professional update of medical personnel and the capacitation to the dispensaries of Social Drug Sales.
The program annually serves 300,000 centers of Social Drug Sales and provided 80,000 medical consultations in 55 municipalities in 15 departments and in the RAAN region. Their implementation is possible thanks to the work associated with the Health Network, integrated through 103 centers, among them Parish dispensaries, religious communities, non-profit organizations, and the collaboration of MINSA.