Support the locals and practise eco-tourism!
1. Buy fruit and vegetables at the local market.
2. Use public transport. Take fewer planes and travel more by bus so you can include more stop-overs during your trip and enjoy the WHOLE country!
3. Why not: let your shoes be cleaned by a local.
4. Take a nice massage on the beach and relax … Look for some shade though, it might get hot and sticky.
5. Why not join cool activities with the locals.
6. Leave clothes and useful belongings you don’t need anymore in a school for example… Someone you may never meet will really appreciate the gesture.
7. Take a picture, print it out and give it to your hosts as a souvenir of your stay.
8. Take a mototaxi instead of walking on a lazy day.
9. Buy a fresh juice or a nice roasted sate on the street.
10. If you live in Colombia? Adopt a pet from the street or support street pets by taking them to the veterinarian so they can be sterilized…
11. Support projects such as:
Building healthy lifestyles in the city of Medellin – Antioquia
In 2006 Eddy Veldhuisen, a Dutch tourist, realized the social reality of the city of Medellin. He decided to stay and work with the most needed. It led to what is now the Fundación Caminos. It starts with the promotion of healthy lifestyles for the youth of the city of Medellin, through sports, cultural and educational projects; it allows them also to enhance their social skills.
For this Eddy Veldhuisen founded the sports club La Naranja Mecánica, being a project with more beneficiaries. Like also English classes, workshops in study and work, in journalism and communication, in music… It reaches young graduates to access superior education, from the financing of all or parts of their enrollment, and offers possibilities to obtain a job that allows them to support their needs.
The foundation also contains the project Leadership in My Community, which trains young people within their neighbourhood and generates projects that contribute to improve the quality of life of its inhabitants.
All together Fundación Caminos benefits more than 200 children in the poorest neighbourhoods of Medellin. There are possibilities to help as a volunteer and to donate. Contact them at +57 (4) 5724215 or by e-mail: [email protected]. Website: www.funcaminos.com (in Spanish and Dutch).
Where? San Martin de Amacayacu in the Colombian Amazon.
Heike Van Gils, a Dutch woman who is running a very nice hostel Casa Gregorio in the Amazon in Colombia started this project to help out the local community (her friends) in San Martin de Amacayacu! The kindergarten is in a very bad state and urgently needs renovation. Therefore this project, with which we aim to raise money for a new kindergarten! You can make a donation!! THANKS IN ADVANCE!!
Account number IBAN: NL28RABO0132726203
Account name: Stichting SMALL WORLD FOUNDATION
City: Baarle-Nassau, Netherlands
The HOGAR Foundation was founded over 35 years ago by a small group of adoptive parents. During their adoption procedures, they visited Colombia and saw the poverty amongst children. It was the start of an official adoption agency, and also the beginning of a trustworthy network that offers financial support to a diversity of projects all over Colombia. After the adoptions have come to an end this network still exists, more than 35 years later, built only on volunteers.
Hogar means home. Too many children in Colombia miss a stable, safe environment. Home to them usually means a barn somewhere in the ghetto, with parents who work around the clock to earn just enough to eat one small thing a day. If they have parents at all… Children are the future, but that should also include these children. These boys and girls desperately want to escape poverty. They dream of going to school and to be able to reach social and financial growth through schooling.
The HOGAR Foundation supports 9 projects in Colombia. Most of these projects are schools, built and sponsored by the HOGAR Foundation. Good schools in brick buildings with clean sanitation, several classrooms and a safe environment. Every year the foundation’s chairman visits each project personally – paid personally – to ensure one more year of educational materials, textbooks, pens en pencils, computer necessities and everything you can think of. Also: the promise of one hot meal a day! For many of these ghetto-children it’s the only meal they have. Once a day one meal…at school!
Every penny donated to the HOGAR Foundation is invested in these 9 projects. One of their volunteers, living in Colombia, visits each project several times a year to ensure that every donation is put to legal and proper use.
Their website is only in Dutch: stichting-hogar.nl.