Where We Work Nicaragua
Get facts about poverty in Nicaragua and learn how we empower its people work their way out of poverty and build a safety net for the future.
In Nicaragua, the least developed country in Central America, approximately 32 percent of the population lives on less than $2 per day. Nearly half of the country’s most impoverished people live in rural areas where they struggle to survive in agriculture-based occupations. For nearly two decades, Opportunity International has worked with microentrepreneurs in Nicaragua to build sustainable, successful businesses that will break them out of the cycle of poverty.
Opportunity Nicaragua seeks to develop a community from within, building upon its local assets and investing in strategies that grow the local economy through the development of small and medium enterprises. The program provides both individual and community-level investments to address sustainable solutions for entrepreneurs, their families and their communities.
Agriculture: Nicaragua’s economy is driven primarily by agriculture. Opportunity Nicaragua’s agriculture initiatives provide financing, training and technology that enable farmers to engage in sustainable practices. Our agronomists teach farmers how to create farms that recycle local resources and produce healthier crops.
Agricultural processing plant: We assist in adding economic value to farm products through our agricultural processing plant, reducing the risk of poor farmers’ dependence on just one crop. By diversifying the products processed through the plant, farmers increase their incomes and access new market opportunities. With additional earnings and a greater peace of mind, they can feed and clothe their families, send their children to school, invest in their businesses and find hope for a better future.
Artisan Support: Skilled Nicaraguan artisans have developed generational expertise for hand-crafted products, but often lack knowledge on how to develop a business plan or improve products for export. In response to these needs, Opportunity International links artisans with expertise in design, business, financing, training and identifying new markets.
Community Infrastructure Projects: The Nicaragua Community Economic Development Program works with communities to enhance their ability to identify issues, create action plans, mobilize members of the community and implement successful changes that improve a community’s trajectory. These community-led initiatives, including road repair, wells, libraries, etc., are critical to instilling local ownership and long-term sustainability.
Youth: In 2012, we expanded from one Young Life Club to three serving vulnerable teens in Granada.
Emprenadora Technical High School: Established in 2012, the school empowers 7th grade students through hands-on learning in the area’s two most promising industries — tourism and agriculture. Opportunity Nicaragua teaches youth skills that are specific to their local economy, providing them tools to successfully return to their family farm or business, get a good job in the community or go to university.