From the Vivir Juntos Board

The project of the Ruach Community for people with intellectual disabilities in Juigalpa has a Nicaraguan board and members’ meeting. Elections are held every two years. Astrid Delleman expects these elections to be held later in July. It is good that every now and then to have new shoulders to the plough. After all Ruach’s work has to be long-term.

The political situation in Nicaragua
The political situation is somewhat dire. National elections will be held in November. But what is the meaning of a national election when opposition members are put behind bars? Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega is doing everything he can to gain even more control and does not shy away from any means of doing this. International pressure also seems to have failed so far.
In the country, all agencies which receive money from abroad are subject to more than usual scrutiny. Bank accounts for some agencies were blocked, although so far the Ruach Foundation has been spared that fate. However, it is a concern that our coordinator Astrid Delleman has not yet received a visa extension for her stay in Nicaragua – a situation which is also linked to the legal status of her employer, the Ruach Foundation. All NGOs are subject to more stringent new rules which delay procedures and create backlog among the relevant Government departments.

The new board of Vivir Juntos started on July 8, 2021
The transfer meeting from old to new board was held on 8 July. Niko Tetteroo and Jeroen Boggia resigned. Ruud Lambregts, recruited to the Vivir Juntos board earlier this year, remained a board member and became the new chairman. Henk Verheul is the new secretary and Willy de Mooij the new treasurer. They will introduce themselves.
We are all very happy that Annelies and Michiel Witz continue their work for Vivir Juntos. This guarantees communication via, for example, the newsletters and the website. Annelies and Michiel are not part of the Vivir Juntos Board, but their work is indispensable.

Niko and Jeroen extend their warmest thanks to the many donors and funding agencies for their many years of contributing. Their thanks also go to the various churches in Leiden and beyond for their regular collections with considerable proceeds. They wish their successors all the best and lots of fun in their new job!

Ruud Lambregts, Chairman and Jeroen Boggia, Former Chairman