Tag Archives: volunteer

A New Dawn for Un Nuevo Amanecer

By Dan Thompson

Un Nuevo Amanecer (A New Dawn) is a Huatulco organization that focuses on the detection, prevention, and treatment of disabilities, including educational needs and delayed development needs, in children. This civil association (associación civile, a certified Mexican nonprofit) has been meeting the needs of these children for almost 25 years. It is the only center of its type on the Oaxacan coast; last year, UNA offered over 7,000 individual sessions to about 150 children from Huatulco and surrounding municipalities.
Unfortunately, UNA and its work still remains unknown to the great majority of both locals and foreigners. You can learn more about them on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/Un-Nuevo-Amanecer-en-pro-del-discapacitado-AC-185242528169754.
Supporting the Work of Un Nuevo Amanecer
The organization Amigos de Un Nuevo Amanecer was founded to educate residents and visitors about the incredible work done by Un Nuevo Amanecer, and to encourage donations and support for this organization. Their Facebook page is at http://www.facebook.com/groups/219989236981319.
Amigos de Un Nuevo Amanecer started the annual Blues on the Beach concert 10 years ago as a fundraiser for UNA; the event has grown to the point that it provides 60% of UNA’s operating budget. Alas, COVID canceled the 2021 concert, and put a crimp in UNA’s funding, and yet despite this, the center continued therapy sessions, actually treating more children with the assistance of hard-won grants, donations and small-scale raffles. COVID being still with us, there will not be a Blues on the Beach concert of the same scope as past years, but the need for funding remains the same – your donation of $300 pesos (about $15 USD) provides one individual therapy session.

A New Home for A New Dawn
Since its beginning, UNA has operated from the second floor of the founder’s family hardware store. There is an urgent need for a safer and expanded center to enable UNA to better serve existing families, and to assist more families. Now, after many years of effort to build a new home for Un Nuevo Amanecer, it is finally becoming a reality. A building lot has been titled, engineering and architectural plans are being developed, and groundbreaking is scheduled for early June.

The project is split into three phases, each of which will cost approximately $1,000,000 pesos. UNA has secured enough commitments to start the project, but funding for the subsequent stages must be raised. UNA needs your support both to fund its ongoing activities and to complete this critical building project.

Donations can be made via Paypal by going to http://www.paypal.me/unnuevoamanecerhux.

If you require a Canadian Tax receipt, you can donate through AMISTAD at http://www.amistadcanada.org/donate/. Instructions for donating from your bank and by check are on the left; the online donation column is on the right. Please make sure to click on Un Nuevo Amanecer as your desired charity.

The Huatulco Foodbank

By Lenore Harder and Tamara Plugers

Community is an amazing gathering of people who make time for each other to help as needed, accept when needy, and be humbled without recognition. In the tropical paradise of Huatulco, we have just that thing, community!

Thanks to several ambitious kind souls and their commitment to help others during difficult times, countless hours have been spent to purchase, assemble, and deliver hundreds of essential food hampers to some of Huatulco’s less fortunate population. As Covid-19 has approached and affected the world, we want to thank these “warriors” for the additional time and energy they have put into this since, almost overnight, the Huatulco tourism economy shut down, leaving thousands without work and the means to support their families.

In 2014 Randy Clearwater partnered with his friend Wilfrido Justiniano and a local church to start the Huatulco Foodbank. The goal was to, in love, meet the physical needs of those in the community who could not support themselves and their families for various reasons. Initially funds came in by means of donations through the local church and the business community, as well as from expats who were made aware of the need.

In time, various fundraisers for the Foodbank started up; now, thankfully, the Foodbank is continuing to receive additional funding to help support some immediate and desperate needs via Facebook. In the past few weeks, hardworking teams have hit the ground running to make sure that as many people as possible could be served with food and basic necessities.

We are blessed to have Wilfri’s wife, Nada who because of her past work experience in the community, is well acquainted with many of the women and families in the area. Both Wilfri and Nada have huge hearts and a gift for comforting and supporting struggling people. One experience stands out in Wilfri’s mind:

One day we organized a trip to El Manantial [a small town on the on the road between Santa María Huatulco and Pluma Hidalgo]. Our friend Pedro, a Cuban volunteer and former Barcelo dancer, and I took around 25 food hampers to deliver to a group of people. When we got there, we realized that about 12 of the people had come from the mountain area called Loma Limón, walking two hours to get food for their families. They explained to us that there was no grocery store available, and because of the blockade [at the airport], there was no way to bring food from Huatulco by car to the community. So we felt so blessed to be able to put some food in their hands.

A hearty thanks to the hands-on team working on purchasing, assembling, and delivering the food hampers. Randy Clearwater, Wilfri Justiniano, Rock Berube, and Manny Novoa have organized and distributed in excess of 640 hampers in Huatulco and the surrounding rural communities. They have been on the front line, recognizing the risks involved in this epidemic. To assist even greater numbers of people, food is also being donated to local community kitchens in the outlying areas.

Let this be an exchange for years to come, no matter the circumstances. People Helping People.

We invite you to contribute however you can. More donations always gratefully accepted. To donate, go to Facebook and search for Huatulco Foodbank:

If you are donating from Canada, you can send an e-transfer; from the United States, use PayPal.
In either case, send your donation to rlclearwater@gmail.com.