Food For The Poor and CEPUDO partner on projects
SAN PEDRO SULA, HONDURAS – (June 11, 2009) – Five thousand Honduran schoolchildren will get new desks, and more than 48,000 residents will receive new shoes, thanks to a partnership between U.S.-based charity Food For The Poor (FFP) and CEPUDO. These latest projects supplement an initiative that has delivered more than $204 million worth of food, educational supplies, medicine and other healthcare items shipped by Food For The Poor to the country in the last 18 months.
“By working together, we are able to magnify our efforts and better serve the people of Honduras, especially the children,” said Angel Aloma, Executive Director of Food For The Poor. “We know there is nothing more important to breaking the cycle of poverty than education, and that includes ensuring that schools are equipped to serve the students.”
The desk program is a collaboration between Bishop Tomas Muldoon, O.F.M, who has served Honduras for 33 years, and FFP. Students at the diocesan Juticalpa Technical School will build 5,000 wooden desks that will be purchased by FFP and distributed to schools throughout the country.
Bishop Muldoon has a long history of service in Honduras. He was ordained a priest in New York in 1966 and just one month later arrived in Honduras for his first assignment as parochial vicar, in the Cathedral of the Parish of Juticalpa in Olancho. Over the years, Muldoon has continued his missionary work in Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, but most of his life has been devoted to helping the people of Honduras.
Like Bishop Muldoon, former bishop of Honduras, His Eminence Óscar Andrés Cardinal Rodríguez Maradiaga, S.D.B. Archbishop of Tegucigalpa, also has a strong relationship with Food For The Poor. In 2008, Cardinal Rodríguez joined Food For The Poor’s Board of Directors. Cardinal Rodríguez’s knowledge in education, healthcare and human rights complements the core programs of Food For The Poor.
“These items are a blessing to the people of Honduras and we are happy to help make sure they get to the people who need them most,” said Linda Coello, President of the CEPUDO Foundation. “Our organization is committed to offering caring oversight for all the projects of Food For The Poor in Honduras. With the recent earthquake, we are trying to determine if there are special needs to be addressed. Our organizations are standing ready to offer aid wherever help is needed.”
The shoes that are being distributed are counterfeit athletic shoes that were originally seized by U.S. Customs and Border Protection and U.S. Immigration and Enforcement agents. U.S. officials turned the knockoffs over to nonprofits to be distributed to the needy. Some of the shoes were distributed this week, and thousands more will be distributed in coming days to those in areas hit by the recent earthquake.
The list of goods sent from FFP to Honduras includes life-sustaining food, medicine and other medical supplies, furniture, and educational supplies. Shipments to Honduras in 2008 and through May 31 of this year total $204 million in aid.
“Our commitment to Honduras continues on many fronts,” Aloma said. “We value the support of our partners, and we look forward to growing with them in our service to the poor.”
The CEPUDO Foundation oversees all of Food For The Poor’s projects in Honduras, and much of the distribution of goods sent by FFP to that country. CEPUDO operates a number of education and community centers that provide the impoverished communities of Honduras with workshops and training classes. The organization recently received an award at the 39th Assembly of the Organization of American States for its work with programs against domestic violence for women.
Food For The Poor is the largest international relief and development organization in the nation. More than 97 percent of all donations in 2008 went directly to programs that help those in need. Food For The Poor provides nourishing food, housing, necessary medical care, educational materials, support for orphans and the aged, and much more to the poorest of the poor in 17 countries in the Caribbean and Latin America. For more information, visit www.FoodForThePoor.org.
Linda Coello Bobadilla
Plaza AXA 9 avenida Sur Oasta 2 y 3 calle
San Pedro Sula, Honduras, C.A.