The story behind the creation of Dar Esperanza LLC begins with Dale Wilson’s two week trip to Guatemala in August 2017. Dale spent the first installing a small clean/ pure water plant in a school located in the city of Quezaltepeque. He dedicated the second week of his trip to exploring. Dale and his wife support a family that lives close to El Estor. Dale wanted to visit the family and to visit Tikal, the Mayan ruins in the jungles of northern Guatemala.
When visiting Tikal, Dale hiked to the top of Temple IV at dawn and took the above picture. Taken while sitting 120 feet in the air atop a ruin over thousand years old the image captures not only the spirituality of the moment but also a little of the connectedness of life. Dale was in awe that he was in this place and sitting on something that was built so long ago by people by people looking for understanding and meaning in their lives. Dale explains, “I was feeling incredibly grateful to have this moment, realizing that not many people get opportunities like this, or opportunities like I’ve had in my life. I suppose it was in these moments that Dar Esperanza (Spanish for “to give hope, or to give encouragement) was conceived. Conceived in the sense that I still had to put pieces together. But I wanted to give others hope and encouragement, to give opportunities for a better life. It just took a gestation period to figure out how I might have an effect.”
Dale Wilson had learned about the use and installation of small clean / pure water systems. He and his wife were very familiar with a family that live in a village without clean / pure water. These two facts gave him the first objective for Dar Esperanza which was to raise money for a water plant for Chichipate. The amount of money needed to install a clean / pure water system in Chicipate is $15,000.
Dale wanted to raise the money in a different way than a typical charity. Certainly, he wanted to accept donations and direct it to Agua Viva earmarked for Chichipate. He also wanted to use some of the business skills that he has acquired over the years to raise money in other ways as well. In this way he could not only raise money for the clean water system, but help others make money to support their families using their skills. Finally, it was a way to support local environmentalism both by the repurposing of wood and by replanting trees.
Our immediate mission is to make clean, pure water available to the people of Chichipate, Guatemala. This is a relatively poor village of about 2,500 people. The people of Chichipate are mostly of Mayan descent and live by subsistence farming. There are schools in Chichipate. Education is mandatory until age 16 but this is seldom enforced. The small community has 10 churches, a couple of comedores (small restaurants) and one pharmacy. There is a building identified as a clinic, but on Dale’s visit to the city he never saw anyone there. (It may have specific hours or days.)
Chichipate gets its water from a spring located some distance away.
The water is piped directly from this spring into people’s homes for drinking and cooking. There is no water purification of any type. Whatever is in the water from the spring--sediments, bacteria, viruses and parasites-- is ingested by the people of Chichipate.
After a rain, the water is cloudy from sediments. Needless to say, the people of Chichipate are often sick from waterborne diseases. Over time, a person can build up an immunity to some diseases, but there are continual problems with others and with parasites. And infants, the elderly, women who are pregnant, and people who have other infirmities are always more susceptible to these diseases.
Agua Viva International and other organizations install small water purification systems that can produce 2,000 or more liters of water a day. The systems are relatively inexpensive and easy to operate and maintain. The cost for a system, parts and installation is around $15,000. The systems are sustainable. Agua Viva encourages the operator of the system to charge a small amount to those who can afford to pay. This covers the costs of paying the operator and the small maintenance costs that are associated with operating the water purification system. However, Agua Viva International also encourage that clean water be given to those who cannot afford to pay.
Typical water purification system
There is a second phase to the system as well. Agua Viva International and others provide education to instruct people on the necessity of drinking and using clean water. This is important because many people have little concept of the various causes of diseases and the consequences of drinking impure water. The initial education is followed up several times a year with continuing education. And each person initially picking up a bottle of water is provided a short education session.
Clean water educational banner.
The products sold by Dar Esperanza LLC will do more than provide funding for clean water. Each product for sale will be designated for a particular benefit. Dale has a few ideas in mind.
To get started, a portion of the sale of each pen will go towards funding a water plant in Chichipate, Guatemala. While we are not sure of all the costs, the sale of fewer than 500 of these pens will fund the plant. The sale of 500 of these pens will also provide significant support to the families of local artisans in this area of Guatemala. It will also provide the funding for the planting of over 2,000 trees in a local reforestation project.
Funding for Chichipate Water Plant
THANK YOU TO OUR DONORS
A special thank you to our donors who have generously given to our cause of providing clean water to the people of Chichipate, Guatemala.