Cacao Raffle for an Eco-Artisan Women Center in Guatemala!

Fundraising campaign by Laurence Tremblay
  • US$862.00
    raised of $6,000.00 goal goal
14% Funded
38 Donors

No more donations are being accepted at this time. Please contact the campaign owner if you would like to discuss further funding opportunities

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Cacao RAFFLE! What does that mean? We are selling tickets to win a great basket full of cacao offerings thanks to our partners. 100% of the contribution will go towards building an eco-artisan women's center in Chicacao.


Our collaborators and their contribution:

Cacao Source

Cacao Source is a cacao production social enterprise. They offer the shipment of 2 lbs cacao at your door and a variety of online offerings. The online course is a compellation of years of experience working with cacao and the local community. It is a unique offering sharing a holistic view point of cacao.

Find out more at www.sourcecacao.com

Niamh O’Brien

Niamh will be offering a space for you at one of her online group Biofield Tuning sessions. This is a one-hour group treatment session held via zoom, if you can’t join the live session, a recording will be sent out that is available for 7 days after the session. ⁣

Biofield Tuning is a healing modality using tuning forks in your energy field to find areas of frozen energy (electromagnetic energy). When “sticky spots” are located Niamh uses the tuning fork like a magnet to drag that frozen energy from outside of your body and drop it back inside your body, giving you back your biophotons (light particles). It’s a relaxing, soothing, yet profound treatment.

After sessions people often report feeling lighter, brighter, more aware of their thoughts, less reactive, less triggered by people and environments, energized and happier in themselves.

Value of 17$


Irene

1:1 online Heart & body awareness session (value €150,-)

In this session we will connect to the feeling body and let it show us what your body desires to be on the agenda. This session will include:

- Grounding meditation

- Short introduction

- Check in exercise, scanning state of your mental, physical and emotional body and intention setting

- Breathing exercises

- Cacao sharing and guided meditation/ visualisation

- Sharing


Britta

Online Cacao Ceremony

sacred heart

Honouring the sacred medicine of Cacao in a space of love. A deep dive into the heart, unfolding our aliveness and anchoring ourselves back in an embodied flow of the heart.

Take another moment of standing still and connecting with our heart, being held by Mother Cacao.

Illuminating our path through prayer and sacred presence as our hearts unfold and open to our inner truth.

Ceremony of 2,5-3h


Tickets: 10$

You are welcome to buy more than 1 ticket to increase your chances of winning AND to support further the indigenous women of Chicacao. PLEASE share this campaign to support the project!

About the Fundraiser

Help us Build a community-owned center for indigenous women to receive skill training, gather, share, and be part of creating a better future for their children.

Have you ever wanted to make a difference by giving back to the farming community behind the food you consume?

We believe that just like us, you want to give back to the local indigenous community of Guatemala as an appreciation to the land where you source the medicine of cacao, your coffee, your banana, and who knows, maybe even the rubber that makes your tires which drives you around town.

For women from La Union, a farming community-based in Chicacao Guatemala, it is a chance to gain economic independence, participate in the poverty alleviation of their village and offer their children a brighter future. For the environment, the support and development of organic farms mean the conservation of bio-diversity, regeneration of quality topsoil, and protection of the water sources.

Guatemala is currently among the 10 most affected countries by climate change today (Germanwatch) and the local community, with your help, wants to take action. Every year, storms hit harder, droughts are more intense and heat waves stronger:

we invite you to support a more resilient farming culture and protect Guatemala’s farming communities from the impact of our global actions.

In 2020 there have been 457 femicides and 43,482 complaints filed in Guatemala with an ineffective response as 71% of murders go unpunished, and the rate increased in rural areas. The following year, the numbers were as alarming. On March 7th 2021, women were marching on the streets of the capital city asking for the protection of their lives. (El Pais) Immediate actions are necessary and women have to be part of the solution.

This women's center is one initiative that could protect the lives of many girls and women through financial independence and creating a safe space to share experiences and support.

Our goal is to start the construction of the women's center by January 2023 and open the center by November 2023. Every donation is extremely valuable to the purpose of this mission.

Story

Over 3 years ago Cacao Source started visiting frequently the town of Chicacao as we were collaborating with nearby organic small-scale locally owned cacao farms. Throughout these years we could hear whispers of the 36 years of internal conflict in Guatemala and its impact on the town… it is still today a raw wound that impacts most lives. Every monthly visit, we will drive past the infinite monoculture rubber farms on the outskirts of the town of Chicacao. When we look up in the direction of Lake Atitlan, a highland region up a range of mountains that were once the formation of a volcano and today known as one of the world’s most beautiful lakes, we see a green forest. We found out later that this forest is protected as a private reserve by a large-scale farm called Finca Milan. The farm has decided to only cultivate 20% of their land so they could protect the last spider monkey community on Guatemala’s Pacific coast.

About a year ago, as we were developing Give Back to the Source non-for-profit initiative, we visited Finca Milan for the first time. We met the farm owner, and encounter La Union community, based between Chicacao and Finca Milan. Finca Milan was once known as a coffee farm, where the indigenous community from across the region would come to work during harvest season until the coffee market drastically decreased and the farm lost the liveliness it once had. Today, the farm is looking into diversifying crops and implementing sustainable practices. In collaboration with Finca Milan, who agreed to donate the women's center land to the indigenous community, we aim to include La Union community, especially women, in the vision of a prosperous sustainable future for all.

In May 2022 we met together: la Union community, Finca Milan, and Give Back to the Source for the community to express their needs and share the future vision. With Give Back to the Source, we noticed how the women would speak quietly and the community was envisioning benefits for the children and the church. So we wondered what are the needs of the women.

We met again, this time only with a group of 15 women, and opened space for everyone to share their stories, their needs, and their dreams. The main expressed desires were education, health, and entertainment. The majority of the women were mid-aged and accompanied by their children. One of the participants Angelita shared: I would have loved to continue studying, but I barely made it to primary school. My family didn't want me to study, I was raised to be a mother, a wife and to serve. We don't know much, but what we do know; is that with the education you wake up from living asleep.” Our takeaway was that women of La Union are willing to learn skills to be resilient and are striving toward creating sustainable opportunities for future generations in the community. Growing up they were restricted in shaping their future. Gloria, another participant shared:’’I wanted to finish school. The same as Angelita, my mom didn't want me to continue after primary. I was better off doing the tortillas, helping my brothers’’.

Angelita and Gloria had a spark in their eyes when we introduced them to the potential of learning how to process cacao and learn artisanal work. The women expressed deep gratitude for having their voices heard and being part of the thought process of visualizing the potential future for women in the community. With Give Back to the Source we aim to support a sustainable future for Guatemala. We believe that a project such as La Union could be a catalyst for neighbor farms to understand the value of organic, diversified farming. La Union women's center can be an ally to Finca Milan’s sustainable development plan as well to all the nearby indigenous small-scale-owned farms. By creating the heart of the operations within the hands of a group of women, we can ensure that most of process before arriving at the hands of customers remains in the local community and therefore, the revenue as well. It will include processing, packaging, marketing, and distribution. It also allows keeping sustainable ethics under the guardianship of La Union women for eco-friendly solutions to the operations.

Meanwhile, the women of La Union will be active participants in the economy of their community and inspire generations of girls to create an economically independent future for themselves.

Project

Union Women Center is our first non-for-profit initiative with the goal to create a community-owned space where women may gather in a safe environment to connect and become financially independent through artisan activities. Indigenous women of the La Union community will be provided eco-friendly artisanal skill training to add value to local organic farm products. It will support both, small-scale organic farmers and indigenous women.

Located in Chicacao, cacao paste blocks will be a leading product as well, as dry fruits, honey, and bamboo furniture, which are all locally grown yields of the region and the women were enthusiastic to learn the skill set. We are planning to have a space allocated for a health clinic to offer essential services to the well-being of the community.

For the women, it is more than a place to work, it's a place for education, health, and recreational activities… something which hasn’t been available, until now.

For our passionate international cacao community, it is an opportunity to be part of the change that the Union Women Community is asking for and to bring back value to the town that was known as ‘’the gateway of cacao” during the Mayan Civilisation era.

Challenge

The cacao industry is facing a lot of controversies including child slavery, exploitative labor, illegal deforestation, and alarming soil deterioration. As cacao lovers, we all enjoy our guilty pleasure from a 2$ chocolate bar, but what is the true cost?

The cocoa industry is part of many agricultural industries using extensive monoculture to produce cheap and efficient production crops. Meanwhile, we face a global climate crisis at the mercy of these unsustainable practices. So, what are our alternatives?

In Guatemala, the cacao market remains in the shadow of large-scale plantations such as sugar cane, rubber, banana, cotton, and coffee. We believe with Give Back to the Source that the historical meaning of cacao, a native tree, is a leading factor in the disinterest of influential parties to invest in Guatemalan’s cacao market. Traditionally, cacao was known as prosperity, food of the gods, and literally ‘money’ that grew in the trees from the eyes of colonizers. For this reason, we believe cacao can be a catalyst for social, environmental, economic, and cultural change.

Furthermore, Chicacao, the hosting town of Union Women Center, was once known to be the gateway of cacao being located between the pacific and the highlands of Guatemala. During the 36 years of internal armed conflict, it was also a gateway, but this time, it was a gateway for the army to reach the indigenous highland communities. The town has lived through a lot of harm, like most indigenous communities in Guatemala, women suffered from sexual violence and abuse. The internal armed conflict has stopped but the abuse against women continued. Today, Guatemala finds itself ranked #4 with the highest femicide rate in the world. A vast majority of violence against women goes unpunished, perpetuating the cycle of crimes against them, leaving women vulnerable and unsafe. A Guatemalan feminist Sandra Moran shared that most women do not bring their abuse to justice because of a lack of financial independence.

The abuse against women and the environment are two of the largest challenges in the country. Today, Guatemala is one of the 10 most affected countries by climate change: it is urgent to save our soil from extensive monoculture and give a voice to women.

Solution

All donations of this fund will go towards the construction of the Union Women Center and eco-artisanal skill training for 40+ women to encourage agroforestry initiatives in the region, reduce gender inequalities and alleviate extreme poverty.

The center will be built by CASSA, a social enterprise specializing in bamboo & sustainable construction. The center will include solar energy, water collection & sanitation system. The model aims to give the community space with minimal fixed cost and maintenance.

Diversified, decentralized, and organic farming practices are our solution to the environment threat of Guatemala. Having indigenous farming communities and women as allies to take care of our earth is part of the solution. When speaking about a diversified cacao farming practice, we have to include a variety of different fruits in the forest and yields the farmer can profit from. For this reason, in order to give a sustainable solution for cacao farming, the development of a women's collective to process the cacao seeds has to include added-value products of other yields such as dry fruits, bamboo furniture, and beekeeping. This way we are optimizing the diverse forest and its revenue coming back to the local community. The local economy becomes more resilient compared to a single fluctuating market.

How Your Donation Will Be Used

When you donate to Give Back to the Source’s Women Center Fund, your donation will be used to:

  • Build a bamboo-made sustainable building answering indigenous women’s needs in La Union Community. A space where 40+ women can be trained in eco-artisanal skills to create economical independence.
  • Provide solar panels, water collection, and sanitary systems for the minimal intervention of the community in the maintenance of the centerTrusted and Reliable

100% transparent policies and bi-yearly reports giving you access on our progress and challenges to keep you in the loop of your impact. You will have access to reports on our progress. We will give you news as much as possible so you may stay connected to the project. Union Women Center is accessible for all to visit and you will be the first to know when it opens its door!

The project is in partnership with Finca Milan, a local farm that has been operating for decades, and CASSA, a well-established social enterprise.

Give Back to the Source's Track Record

Give Back to the Source is an initiative from Cacao Source, a cacao producer social enterprise of Guatemala that is currently supporting 7 women collectives in San Marcos la Laguna including 33 women and their families. We are currently working with 5 small-scale locally owned farms and 2 of them have accomplished the organic transition with the support of local regenerative organizations.

In total, Cacao Source is currently impacting directly the life of 256 indigenous from Guatemala. The 5 partnering farms are absorbing about 1,888,000 KG of CO2 yearly, which is about twice as much as any monoculture farms with the same amount of cacao trees as our 5 small-scale farms could do.

We have observed that much more work is necessary, especially without any international for-profit influence, to support the empowerment of Guatemala’s indigenous communities for a sustainable future. Our social enterprise allows us to offer market and revenue opportunities for indigenous people living under the poverty line.

Rewards

1 raffle ticket

Get one ticket for the chance to win our raffle basket.

20 Backers
6 tickets for the raffle

More chances to win the raffle!

3 Backers
15 tickets for the raffle

More and more chances to win the raffle. Beyond all, a huge support to our fundraiser goal to build an eco-artisan center.

2 Backers

Organizer

  • Laurence Tremblay

Donors

  • Anonymous
  • Donated on Jun 12, 2023
  • Keep up this important work!

$50.00
  • Anonymous
  • Donated on Jun 12, 2023
  • Thank you for your beautiful work!

$100.00
  • Guest
  • Donated on Jun 12, 2023
$10.00

No updates for this campaign just yet

Donors & Comments

38 donors
  • Anonymous
  • Donated on Jun 12, 2023
  • Keep up this important work!

$50.00
  • Anonymous
  • Donated on Jun 12, 2023
  • Thank you for your beautiful work!

$100.00
  • Guest
  • Donated on Jun 12, 2023
$10.00
  • Megan Kenson
  • Donated on Jun 12, 2023
  • Much love and blessings 🤍

$50.00
  • Rita Szépfalusi
  • Donated on Jun 11, 2023
  • With the Love of My Heart from Europe. Have a beautiful life, beautiful Women! 🩷

$10.00
  • Angelika Shelley
  • Donated on Jun 10, 2023
  • Wrapping this in an intention of loving support!

$10.00
  • Szilvia Timar
  • Donated on Jun 10, 2023
  • I’m so happy I can contribute to this wonderful cause and project! Hope the virtual piggy bank gets full very soon! Thank you ♥️

$50.00
  • Rose S
  • Donated on Jun 09, 2023
$10.00
$10.00
  • Sanna Knutar
  • Donated on Jun 09, 2023
$20.00
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Followers

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US$862.00
raised of $6,000.00 goal
14% Funded
38 Donors

No more donations are being accepted at this time. Please contact the campaign owner if you would like to discuss further funding opportunities