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Stories from the Field

“With Small Things, We Can Make Big Impacts."

By Hannah Payne on December 17, 2019

Sandra Lorena, age 39, lives in Managua, Nicaragua, at her father-in-law’s home with her husband and children. She has a job as a housekeeper, and has worked since she was 16 years old. Her dream is for her family to own their own home and store, where she could work and spend more time with her children.

Sandra’s family receives nutritious Rise Against Hunger meals at a feeding center run by partner ORPHANetwork. Previously, the family would eat just one meal each day, usually consisting of rice and beans. Sandra is thankful for the meals, saying, “Now, with the help of Rise Against Hunger, we eat three times a day. All my children and I eat it. For me, that rice is sacred, and no one else can cook it, only me. I appreciate this help so much.”

She adds, “I don’t have to buy rice anymore and I utilize the soy. My children eat more, they are getting well nourished, I see they look better.”

Lorena, a leader and counselor at the feeding center, shares, “Sandra is a fighter, always trying to have some work so that she can give her children something better. She takes initiative by working and taking on any side job that comes her way. Her children have more color in their faces since eating the Rise Against Hunger meals, and Sandra’s eyes light up when she talks about all of the ways she prepares the meals for her children. Through united efforts, we can impact the lives of many people; we are able to transform the lives of communities through nourishing food.”

ORPHANetwork also distributes soap donated by Rise Against Hunger to the feeding centers, where children learn about handwashing and its importance. Handwashing is “one of the simplest and most effective ways to prevent the spread of disease,” according to the United Nations. When each child arrives at the feeding center, they immediately wash their hands before eating. For many of the children, this behavior becomes a habit, which helps to ensure the prevention of diseases that could inhibit child development.

Kate, the ORPHANetwork Program Relations Director, says, “Our vision is to make every child reach his or her maximum potential. For that we educate the mothers on issues of disease prevention, nutrition and positive parenting. We provide support so that they are guaranteed at least one plate of food a day. We work to reduce acute and chronic malnutrition. We also have a dental program and an after-school education program.”

She adds, “Thanks to the donations of Rise Against Hunger meals and soap, we can provide better health and nutrition to our children in different communities of our country. With small things, we can make big impacts.”

As Kate said, a small thing can make a big impact. Our meals do more than nourish; they also symbolize hope for those who receive them. To do something small that can have a big impact, donate today to help families in need like Sandra’s around the globe.