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A Grant Opens the Door for Community Development!

Written by Deena Collins, Grants Manager

Lifeline is thrilled to have recently received a $25,000 grant from Cross International for a leadership training and community development project in Ocotillo, Honduras! We are so excited!

Thanks to this grant, local neighborhood leaders will gain new leadership skills and their communities will be strengthened! Sixteen (16) local neighborhood leaders in the Ocotillo community have signed up to participate. These neighborhood leaders are called patronatos. Together, the patronatos will go through a leadership development training program and will also work together on a small community project. To flesh this out in more detail, here are the objectives of each phase:

Phase 1: Leadership Development Training
Lifeline’s Honduran leaders will…

  • train and develop leadership skills of the patronatos
  • encourage unity among these community leaders

Phase 2: Small Community Project
Lifeline’s Honduran leaders will accompany the patronatos as they…

  • identify a need in their community, one that will address local needs and benefit the entire community (for example: housing improvements, or improvements on or maintenance of wells & pumps)
  • research and propose a unifying community development project to meet that need
  • oversee and execute the project, working within the defined budget

The goal is for the community to be strengthened spiritually, relationally, and physically!

But let’s back up a little. All of this did not come together with the snap of the fingers! Applying for the grant required lots of effort on the part of our Honduran leaders. I admired their readiness to dive in and the excellence of their work.

From left to right, the Lifeline staff that designed the grant project: Pastor Hever, Dilcia Jiminez, Guillermo Pineda, and Belkis Diaz

The grant work actually started in June 2022 when Lifeline's grant team proposed this project to them. Guillermo Pineda (Honduras Country Director), Hever Murcia (pastor), Dilcia Jimenez (teacher), Belkis Diaz (elementary coordinator), and Darwyn Sanchez (Latin American Regional Director) got to work right away. In short order they designed a curriculum for the leadership training, prepared a budget for the project, and developed a plan for monitoring and evaluating the project.

Then in July, they invited 19 patronatos to participate in the leadership training sessions. The invitation was followed by an informational meeting on August 26, and then the first training session on September 2. Sixteen of the 19 invitees agreed to participate!

And I cannot say it enough: our team in Honduras is amazing! In just two months they put together a team and all the details in an outstanding fashion in the midst of all their other responsibilities. I personally learn SO much from them every time I work with them! 

So what happens now? The patronatos will work together to identify and propose a unifying community development project. Once the project is agreed upon, leadership training with the patronatos will continue through the execution of the project.

We are grateful to Cross International for funding both phases of this project. This initial grant will open the door for Lifeline to request funding in the future for a larger, multi-year community transformation project in Honduras. Our wheels are already spinning!

What a privilege and a blessing to serve Jesus and Honduran communities with our Honduran leaders!