Population: 6.2 Million | CAPITAL: MANAGUA
In the heart of Central America lies a beautiful land of untouched rainforests, pristine crater lakes and rugged volcanoes. Nicaragua is a country of contrasts, known throughout the region for its diverse cultural history, vibrant art, and grand literature. Visitors find themselves welcomed by a passionate people living at their own pace, where age-old traditions combine with deep faith for a strong, authentic character.
Nicaragua’s vast potential springs from a past as varied and dramatic as its landscape. A long history of political turmoil, violence and natural disasters has slowed development. The country is now the second poorest in the Western Hemisphere, with 76% of the population living on less than $2.00 a day. This environment is an opportunity for successful and sustainable development through long-term, holistic service.
COMMUNITY MEMBERS directly benefited
Hours served by volunteers in 2018
Manna Project is heartbroken to have suspended our Nicaragua operations as of summer 2019, due to elevated risks and insecurity resulting from political conflict. We eagerly await improvement in the situation so we can quickly re-open programs to support greatly underserved communities who we've partnered with since 2004. While we are still running some of our health programs with local staff, all other programs are currently suspended.
Teenage pregnancies account for 1 in 4 births
43% live on less than $1.00 a day
100% of children need treatment for parasites
1 in 3 children suffers from chronic malnutrition
9.2 hospital beds for every 10,000 people
96% do not have access to preventive health care
The public education and health systems did not begin until the 1980’s
Cedro galán & Chiquilistagua
For more than ten years, Manna Project has been a constant presence in the neighboring, semi-rural communities of Cedro Galán and Chiquilistagua. Families live in open-air homes with dirt floors, and imported cars share the road with ox-drawn carts. These communities, located on the outskirts of Nicaragua’s capital city, Managua, have extremely limited access to even the most basic services. Opportunities for advancement are rare. While few ever leave, families are strong and committed to finding a better future for their children and grandchildren.
For many years, Manna Project served families living in La Chureca, Central America’s largest municipal trash dump. Incredibly, the dump was home to more than 1,000 people who survived by sorting and selling trash. When the Nicaraguan government closed the dump and relocated these families to Villa Guadalupe, along with 3,700 people who were left homeless by flooding in 2010, we moved with them. The community faces unemployment, constant food insecurity and malnutrition. In the absence of outside resources, motivated leaders are emerging, and neighbors give what they can to support one another.