In 2007, Nicaragua was the second poorest country in the Western Hemisphere with nearly three-quarters of the population living off of $2.00 a day. Alongside a lack infrastructure, high governmental debt, low education rates, and high unemployment the Nicaraguan people have little chance of extricating themselves from this poverty cycle without external aid and charities. This was condition of the country when I was embedded with 15 missionaries from the Archdiocese of Miami to assess the needs of schools, orphanages, and meet with local religious and community leaders in order to establish an international supply chain.
This assignment is still with me as it was my first international assignment and I got to experience a haunting sort of poverty that knew no age and blanketed a nation so evenly. To hear children begging for literal scraps and see adults paralyzed with despair, are sights and sounds that are easily recalled whenever I see these images. The sadness of this wretchedness was counter-balanced by the generous hospitality and hope of the Nicaraguan people.