Next Reading Group Program
All are invited to this Reading Group discussion scheduled on March 19, 2014:
Dear Friends of the Hartford/Ocotal Sister City Project,
Please come to the next Hartford/Ocotal Sister City Project and Hartford Public Library Reading Group Discussion of “February 2014 Impressions of Nicaragua: the International Poetry Festival in Granada, the New Canal Proposal, and Ocotal, Hartford’s Nicaraguan Sister City.” Having just returned from Nicaragua, we will tell you about our observations of these topics and share pictures and music. We welcome your discussion at this informal program in the Bridging Cultures Series on Wed., March 19, from 12:30 to 1:30 P.M., at the Hartford Public Library, 500 Main St.
Although news about Nicaragua is scarce in most U.S. periodicals, much is available online. If you would like to read about the above topics, you might want to consult the following sources:
canal – June 18, 2013; and Jan. 7 and Feb. 11, 2014
Granada Poetry Festival – Feb. 18, 2014;
- “THE COMANDANTE’S CANAL” The New Yorker, March 10, 2014, p. 50 (also available online);
- alcaldiaocotal.gob.ni – home page for Ocotal government;
- illsegovias.org – home page for Haydee Castillo’s Leadership Institute of the Segovias.
We hope to see you March 19. Feel free to take your lunch if you like.
Kate and Sherwood Anderson
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The Hartford/Ocotal Sister City Project is a story of two cities reaching out to each other, one in Nicaragua, Central America, the other Connecticut in the United States. It begins in 1986 when the Hartford Ocotal Sister City Project(HOSCP) was established with the help of the Capitol Region Conference of Churches and moves forward again in 1995 when the Project began providing seed money for a micro-lending program called FUNAFAM, which is based on the Grameen Bank model. Financial support from this program has helped hundreds of Ocotal women start small businesses of their own.
Over a period of 25 years HOSCP has used contributions to help fund the following programs, evolving from direct material aid to self-help initiatives:
- Material aid shipments in conjunction with the New Haven-Leon SCP
- Educational events
- Helping to fund the purchase of an ambulance
- Helping to fund the clean water project
- Hurricane Mitch relief
- FUNAFAM, a microcredit program based on the Grameen Bank model. Loaning small amounts of money to individuals starting small businesses
- Health education programs in outlying areas surrounding Ocotal
Many of the founders of the HOSCP are still active in the work. The sister-city commitment does not go out of fashion, nor does it cease to inspire those involved.
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