LATA Foundation’s Projects for 2021

Below you will find more information about our fantastic projects, including our new project ‘El Rio Foundation’ in Colombia and exciting news from Rio de Janeiro-based Projeto Vidançar.

Children and young people

Abriendo Mentes, Costa Rica

Based in Guanacaste, Abriendo Mentes works with two communities to improve access to meaningful employment. When many local adults lost informal and seasonal jobs due to the pandemic, Abriendo Mentes changed their focus to supporting families by providing food parcels. They also gave young people access to computers so they could participate in their school online learning.

Condor Trust, Ecuador

Condor Trust works to break the cycle of poverty by supporting disadvantaged children in Quito to stay on in secondary (and often tertiary) education. They cover costs including uniform, books and travel; and pay the family a small stipend. During lockdown Condor Trust also ensured the students had internet access for home learning, and supported their families with food baskets.

Friends of Alalay, Bolivia

Alalay give accommodation, love and educational opportunities to street children in Santa Cruz. For several years the LATA Foundation has sponsored young adults from Alalay attending vocational courses, and continue to do this in 2021. We also made a contribution towards the home’s additional hygiene measures required during the pandemic.

Projecto Vidançar, Brazil

Based in Rio de Janeiro, Vidançar teaches dance to children and young people in Complexo do Alemão favela. Dance is an enjoyable hobby for many, but for some it is also the gateway to a different life. Over the last month or so, following in the footsteps of other successful students, four young people from Vidançar have been accepted into Petite Danse Ballet School, another won a place at Rio’s Theatro Municipal Ballet School, and two sisters were accepted into Brazil’s Escolar Bolshoi. A fantastic achievement for this grassroots project!

Empowering women

Fundation Calicanto, Panama

Calicanto’s CAPTA course provides disadvantaged women in Panama City with the opportunity to learn life and work skills that improve their chances of gaining secure employment. Pre-pandemic Calicanto worked closely with local hotels to provide work experience and opportunities. During lockdown, classes and associated support have continued virtually, with an emphasis on entrepreneurial skills.

XtraOrdinary Women, Nicaragua

Based in Managua, XtraOrdinary Women have been working to empower women since 2009. In 2020 they successfully ran an ‘Entrepreneur Bootcamp’ for women running micro businesses, adapted to take place virtually. Participants were also helped with hygiene measures to make their businesses more Covid-safe. XtraOrdinary Women are planning to run similar “bootcamps’ for female artisans in Masaya and Bilwi in 2021.


Healing Venezuela

Healing Venezuela works closely with medical partners throughout Venezuela to help ensure the continuation of medical services through the political crisis and now the pandemic. In 2020 the LATA Foundation supported their efforts to provide health centres with PPE. In 2021 we are supporting a contribution to junior doctors’ living expenses, to enhance their regular pay of $8-$15 a month.

Maya Midwifery International – MMI, Guatemala

MMI have supported traditional Mam-speaking midwives in Quetzaltango since 1999. They encourage a fusion of traditional and clinical approaches to pregnancy and childbirth in a region where, for complex reasons, many women don’t interact with state provision. In 2021 the LATA Foundation will continue to contribute towards PPE and cleaning products, and also provide food for the mothers and midwives.

Sustainable tourism

El Rio Foundation, Colombia *NEW PROJECT*

Based in a jungle area of Buritaca, east of Santa Marta and Tayrona National Park, El Rio offers sport and educational opportunities to the local community, as well as engaging in reforestation and waste management projects. In our first year of working together LATA Foundation will be supporting an English language programme aimed at enhancing the opportunities for children and adults. Members of a nearby indigenous community will also be included when local pandemic restrictions allow.

Galapagos Conservation Trust – GCT, Galapagos

The population of the Galapagos Islands have been hard hit by the pandemic as they are heavily dependent on tourists for income and the mainland for food supplies. The LATA Foundation are currently supporting GCT’s ‘Galapagos Urban Family Gardening Project’ to help communities become more self-sufficient with responsible sustainable food production.

Kids Saving the Rainforest – KSTR, Costa Rica

KSTR has offered sanctuary to injured and orphaned wildlife since it was founded in 1999. It also leads research into best practice for releasing animals, including sloths and squirrel monkeys, back into the wild. Heavily dependent on visitors for income, the travel restrictions from the pandemic have forced KSTR to curtail many of its activities and concentrate on raising funds to provide for the animals currently in their care.

The LATA Foundation is a 100% volunteer-run organisation and all the proceeds raised are invested directly into its charitable projects. You can support the LATA Foundation projects HERE.