Last year Ruach celebrated the 5th anniversary of its Community Home. It was also the time to renew the agreement between Ruach and Vivir Juntos. After all, the original objective was that after five years Ruach would be fully financed by local donors.
This goal was not achieved. Ruach is still for 60% dependent on us and also for 35% on incidental foreign funding such as Global Giving. Of course we as the Vivir Juntos board appreciated the plight of the Ruach Foundation, as it is indeed difficult in Nicaragua to raise funds. However, it does pose a risk to Ruach’s long-term continuity as the opportunities for foreign financing are increasingly under pressure. In the past two years the Nicaragua Government has closed down many NGOs (by now around 600), especially those which receive foreign funding, which in the eyes of the Government is seen as “interference”.
That is why last year we investigated with the Ruach board the possibility of intensifying our own efforts for local fundraising, with the aim of reducing the dependence on foreign funds. However, the current board of Ruach is not able to do that, hence a serious risk to Ruach’s future. How long can the Ruach Foundation stay afloat, given that in addition Ruach has no reserves to get through lean times? Therefore we have decided to investigate with the Board, including Astrid Delleman, whether it is possible to guarantee continuity for its Community Home in another way. The future of the Fundacion Ruach is uncertain, but it is clear to everyone that the Community Home must somehow continue because the core members, (these are the intellectually disabled permanent residents), cannot return to their families. As Vivir Juntos we remain involved to assess what we can do. We will of course keep you, our supporters, informed, because without you we can do nothing. Thank you for your sympathy and trust!
On behalf of the board of the Vivir Juntos Foundation,
Ruud Lambregts, Chairman