Great.com interviews Agros about the most effective way to help poor rural Central Americans
Emil Ekvardt from Great.com interviewed Agros as part of their 'Great.com Talks With...' podcast. This series is an antidote to negative news stories that aims to shed light on organizations and experts whose work is making a positive impact on the world.
Many rural families in Central America struggle to make ends meet. Working seasonally on land they don’t own, there is the constant threat of displacement and a daunting search for new work. Alberto Solano discussed how Agros empowers Central Americans to break the cycle of poverty.
Working to live, not living to work
Alberto explained that Agros has a four-pronged strategy for helping rural communities become self-sufficient. Solutions are holistic and long-term; the organization usually works with a village for around 8 to 10 years across a range of fundamentals.
Firstly, Agros buys the agricultural land and allows workers to live and work on it. The profits they make go towards buying the land for themselves. Becoming landowners is a watershed moment for many poorer families, who can finally settle.
Secondly, Agros helps them become effective farmers and connects them to markets for their products.
Thirdly, Agros promotes core financial skills like budgeting. Agros encourages local communities to form communal savings groups, which are often women-led, to advocate for sound financial decision making.
Finally, Agros aims to improve village health and well-being by working with locals to provide healthcare, improved sanitation and access to at least nine years of education.
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