Rural women in Nicaragua are improving their income and self-esteem by learning to make and sell honey.

Rural women in Nicaragua are improving their income and self-esteem by learning to make and sell honey.

CAFOD has worked in Nicaragua for over 50 years. About half of its population live in poverty or severe poverty with many people struggling to meet their basic needs. We work in Nicaragua to tackle gender-based violence, combat climate change, and empower women.

Why CAFOD works in Nicuragua

Poverty and unemployment in Nicaragua are high, especially in rural areas. Most families earn a living through small-scale farming. Although Nicaragua has an abundance of land and natural resources, its dependence on agriculture as the foundation of its economy makes it vulnerable to the impact of extreme weather conditions and unpredictable international food prices. 

Extreme weather such as droughts, floods and landslides contribute to a loss of drinking water resources, an increase in crop diseases, loss of harvests and livestock, destruction of homes and increased health risks. 

Sexual violence against women and girls is common in Nicaragua with the survivor often being blamed for the abuse. It is very difficult for women and girls to access justice for sexual violence and there is often little government support to help them rebuild their lives. Curfew and lockdown measures that are implemented to help stop the spread of coronavirus will likely make this violence worse. 

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Like other countries in Central America, many Nicaraguans depend on money sent home from relatives working overseas for their survival.

Nevertheless, Nicaragua is also a nation with a strong spirit, where women play a fundamental role in local development and where young people are committed to working together to build a better future.  

CAFOD in Nicaragua

CAFOD has worked with local partners and communities in Nicaragua since 1971. We work to bring about lasting change in some of the poorest communities in rural and urban areas and are inspired by the strength and vision of local communities.

Together we are:

  • Strengthening community members’ knowledge and skills relating to climate change so that farmers are more resilient and better prepared for extreme weather.
  • Tackling violence against women and children, sexual exploitation and discrimination towards those living with HIV by providing psycho-legal support and raising awareness among women and girls of their rights.
  • Supporting entrepreneurs, particularly women and young people in urban and rural communities to strengthen their skills and increase their incomes.

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