CHOICE has been working in the Altiplano region of Bolivia for over 25 years to help build a self-sustaining infrastructure in dozens of impoverished Aymará villages. CHOICE’s rural development focuses in Bolivia include eco-friendly school construction projects, economic development programs, clean water systems, and latrine programs.
CHOICE in Ecuador was officially created when CHOICE Humanitarian merged with Feed the World in 2015. The emphasis in Ecuador is primarily to improve the nutritional lifestyles of families and increase quality opportunities with education, health, cultural preservation, environment, leadership, and economic development. All of this is done with a holistic approach that effectively reduces poverty while cultivating self-reliant communities.
During CHOICE’s first expedition to Guatemala, volunteers helped the community to build a school in the community of Xalibe. However, the construction wasn’t the only priority. The goal of the joint effort was for the community to learn important technical skills they could later use for local projects done with autonomy.
Work in Kenya encompasses several aspects including education, health and environment, community economic development, leadership development and cultural enhancement programs. CHOICE in Kenya has initiated numerous school and classroom construction projects, women’s financing programs, water and sanitation projects, basic healthcare training, and more recently has focused on long-range sustainable economic strategies.
One of the first programs implemented in Mexico was focused on building small business cooperatives and economic development action plans, which continue to be one of CHOICE’s key strategies for helping these communities exit poverty.
CHOICE volunteers and staff in Mexico have helped community members reach for better lives by offering training in livestock micro-enterprises, cheese making, handicrafts, blacksmithing, corn mills and many others. Electricity is now available in many villages as well. Women’s savings programs, healthcare training, and classroom construction are also underway throughout Mexico areas.
nAVAJO nATION (USA)
CHOICE has worked to increase the Navajo Nation’s capacity to grow nutritional food by providing resources and trainings to build Hoophouses (a type of greenhouse) in which they can grow produce year-round. The Hoophouses not only provide food rich in nutrients but also create long-term entrepreneurial opportunities so families become self-reliant.
The work in Nepal started by supporting three communities to execute projects addressing local needs: a women's development center, a water delivery system, and a renovation project on a local medical clinic.
As work in Nepal expanded, CHOICE introduced technologies customized for the specific needs of the communities, which have improved the quality of life for thousands of people in rural villages. Some of the most effective and widely spread of these technologies are biogas digesters to provide sustainable cooking fuel and reduce animal waste, metal stoves for decreasing indoor air pollution, and greenhouse construction for off-season farming.
The history of CHOICE Humanitarian and its work in Peru began on September 15, 2010. On this date, Feed the World/the Institute for Self-Reliant Agriculture (ISRA) was established, which later merged to become a part of CHOICE. In Peru, CHOICE first focused on economic self-sufficiency programs but has expanded to implement projects in agriculture surrounding community gardens, livestock, and irrigation.