Juana Zelaya lives in Las Casitas, a community in the Dry Corridor of Southern Honduras. The name is no exaggeration: it is so dry there that farmers lose up to 80% of their crops each year. Because of this, Las Casitas is one of the poorest communities in the country.
Juana knows this well. For years, the 57-year-old mother of seven suffered drought and famine. Crops perished, water was scarce, and her children became thin and weak.
“Someone who lives here can only survive,” she says. “Whatever you grow, that is what you eat. If you raise chickens, animals will come and eat the chickens. If we have tomatoes, they dry up. Little by little, you have nothing left.”
“Little by little, you have nothing left.”
Juana and her family continued to suffer the tragic cycles of drought in her rural community. Hope shriveled up alongside her tomato plants, and the mother despaired of every escaping the pattern.
“Before ADRA, there were no hopes for my children,” she says. “All you hope is for the rains and the ability to harvest your crops.”
“The only crops we would grow were to eat, and nothing to sell,” Juana adds. “The only animals that were here were the animals of the mountain. The only way I got a chicken is if it came to my home.”
All that changed when ADRA brought new life to her dry community.
Today, Juana has a cement water reservoir, a drip irrigation system, sustainable crops, training in business and agricultural management, and more. When she looks out her door, she no longer sees wilted plants, barren fields, and an empty chicken coop. Today, her view is one of the finest in Las Casitas: row after row of fruits and vegetables, a large cement tank filled with water and tilapia fish for breeding, eating and selling, and a healthy flock of chickens.
“When I see this plot of land planted, I thank God for the help of ADRA,” Juana says. “We have really seen a change in our community. Now we have means to support our families. We are all happy.” Your generosity will ensure that more families like Juana and her children will have a secure future.