Community Aid : Finca Irlanda, Mexico


This farm has been producing organic coffee with a strong voice towards environmental and social issues since 1952. We began work with Finca Irlanda in 2000, and, using this farm as a model, we have begun a Non-Profit Organization with the neighboring farm (Finca Hamburgo) in order to more effectively pool their money and resources.

2001 - This year, environmental concerns were addressed by building a fence around the perimeter of the property to keep poachers from entering and killing the wildlife. We also continued to extend the 260 hectares of natural rainforest on the property. A computer class was begun for the school children (see picture) and a preschool and kindergarten program formed. Three teachers were hired for the 5th and 6th grades and supplies were provided for the school. A daily meal program was also instituted for the farm workers. Total spent: $20,000

2002 - A secondary school for grades 6 – 10 was constructed with the help of Rogers’ $26,000 contribution and a $14,000 donation by an outside business. In addition, teachers' quarters were improved, the elementary school's roof was repaired, and books and supplies were distributed to preschool, elementary, and middle schools. Two additional teachers were hired for the elementary school, leading to a rise in enrollment.

2003-2004 - The main project was the construction of new housing and bathrooms for permanent workers (see pictures). We continued to supply meals, school and clinic supplies, and pay teacher salaries.

In the midst of these projects, however, the health of the environment was not overlooked. RCF began a composting program on the farm and contributed money to various projects to help the farm receive its Rainforest Alliance Certification.

2005 - A daycare center and a preschool, as well as a kitchen and bathrooms for the entire school complex, were built (see pictures). We continued to provide the clinic and schools with supplies as well as continued to support the on-going meal program. Total spent: $59,593

2006 - New teachers’ living quarters were built (see picture). The reconditioning of an old classroom allowed RCF to continue helping the farm make structural improvements but timing issues on the project caused us to exceed our budget. Total spent: $22,210

2007 - The primary focus for this year will be to continue improving living conditions by rebuilding the shower and washing area in the upper housing area. Total budgeted: $25,800

Finca Irlanda

Total spent 2001-2006= $147,367
Total budgeted 2007= $25,800

Mexico
- Capital city: Mexico City
- Population: 108,700,891
- Export commodities: oil and oil products, silver, fruits, vegetables, coffee, cotton
- % below the poverty line: 40% (2003)
- GDP/ capita: $10,700 (2006)
- Life expectancy: 75.63 (2007)
- Literacy rate: 91.0% (2004)
- Environmental issues: deforestation, lack of clean water


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