By Casey Callais -- The community of La Virgen sits tight against Lake Nicaragua. The breezy community of 3,000 is only about six miles from Rivas, the largest city in the area. But as blueEnergy discovered, they are still a long way from having basic services such as running water and electricity.
|Rural farmworkers on their daily commute|
Over a period of five days, blueEnergy worked with the community of La Virgen, performing diagnostics to determine community development needs. blueEnergy also worked with community members in assessing what types of projects could be useful in assisting the community in realizing and reaching their aspirations. Elvin Guzman, blueEnergy's Planning Director and Community Diagnostic Specialist, led the effort, which brought together over 300 families from both urban and rural community sectors.
|Elvin explaining the diagnostic to a group of women and children|
Through the diagnostic, blueEnergy was able to identify the weaknesses that have hindered community development and explore lines of opportunity like tourism. Men, women and children came together to draw maps of their neighborhoods, discuss economic conditions, availability of basic services, and what challenges local farmers and businesses face on a day to day basis. This information will not only serve blueEnergy in determining need, but a complete community development plan will also be constructed and given to the village leaders.
|Community members explaining their ideas|
The blueNews will maintain updates on this project as it develops.