PROJECT \ THE ENABLERS \ 06-SanC
1: G. Buccellati, April 2009

San Carlos Foundation

San Carlos Foundation

     The San Carlos Foundation funds individuals who start and maintain programs in support of poor communities in the developing world. In 2008 we were faced with great and urgent needs in the villages around Mozan: as a result of a severe drought, we had hundreds of applicants for work, where we had planned for only about fifty. We sent out a number of appeals, and the San Carlos Foundation answered our call. This was through the intermediary of Martin Sheen, who serves on the board of directors of both the San Carlos Foundation and our Institute.

The large contingent of workmen hired in 2008
through the help of the San Carlos Foundation.

     It has been a tradition of our project to care in a systematic way for the local people in ways that go beyond the normal standards for part time employment. For instance, we have been providing for a number of years and in a systematic fashion health insurance, micro-credit, employment for handicapped, and especially skilled training in a number of different areas.
     In a parallel direction, we have gone farther than caring for the immediate financial needs, in an effort to affirm the value that culture has beyond a narrow circle of intellectuals. Thus, we have been educating the local "stakeholders" by fostering a true awareness of the "stake" they really have in their own past. They are the guardians of a territorial history in which we are privileged to partake. We are the guests of their history.
     In this respect, we are as proud as we are grateful to be counted among the volunteers of the San Carlos Foundation. We share deeply the mission statement that another volunteer, Nancy McGirr, formulated about her project with the children of Guatemala City: "From the beginning, I've worked with the children not only to teach them photography and provide for their education, but to show them the power of dreaming. I tell them that photography is difficult and that if they can do this, they can do anything. There are options in life."