Auditorium construction progresses

Great progress on the open-air auditorium at Instituto Augusto C. Sandino in La Carreta is being made day by day. The hard-working crew has the beams on for the roof. Somos Ohana Nicaragua is hoping for a finishing date in time for the December graduation of the first class that started at this school.
The auditorium is situated between the 3 wings of the school and will be a multi-use facility.

2020-10-26T19:33:45+00:00October 26th, 2020|

La Carreta students carry the Hawaiian flag

Even though the Sept. 14 festivities for Nicaraguan Independence Day in Villanueva were canceled due to COVID precautions, the students of the Instituto A.C. Sandino had their own desfile, or parade. In honor of their Somos Ohana Nicaragua “familia” in Hawaii, the students even sewed their version of the Hawaiian flag, and by hand! (See the marcher on the far right.) They are very special!

Photo by Head Teacher Luvy Uriarte Lainez

2020-09-30T19:30:18+00:00September 30th, 2020|

Construction of La Carreta auditorium under way

The plans were carefully drawn and approved by the Ministry of Education, and workers are building the foundation for the open-air auditorium that will provide a covered stage and seating capacity of over 200 for Instituto Augusto C. Sandino in La Carreta. We expect the auditorium to be completed by this December’s upcoming graduation of the very first group of secondary students, the ones who started in 2016 when the new school opened.

The new structure will also provide a shaded, semi-outdoor classroom space for very hot days, as well as a lighted evening meeting space for the community.

The board of Somos Ohana Nicaragua, unable to travel to Nicaragua in 2020 due to the pandemic, is very pleased to have found a good architect and crew who have worked closely with us long-distance to provide good value in support of our mission. Somos Ohana Nicaragua is very grateful to the generous donors who have made the dream of an auditorium in the La Carreta secondary school a reality.

2020-09-15T04:15:53+00:00September 13th, 2020|

School garden harvest and replanting

Some of the advanced girls who will graduate in December hold large pipianes in this photo taken by Head Teacher, Luvy, at Instituto Augusto C. Sandino in La Carreta. The squash were harvested from the school’s garden. These favorite Nicaraguan gourd fruits come in many sizes and can be white, green or striped. They are steamed or stir-fried into many dishes. Some of the pipianes will be eaten by the students at school and some shared with their families, and the seeds will be saved, shared and planted.

The boys cleared the garden for re-planting, and in the second photo, pipian seeds are put into the holes made by a digging-stick tool.

2020-08-30T22:07:17+00:00August 30th, 2020|

Student’s Vegetables Flourishing

Since the rains returned to NW Nicaragua, the vegetables grown by the students at the rural Instituto Augusto C. Sandino in La Carreta have flourished in the school’s vegetable garden.

A meal at school provides extra nourishment, and the process of creating it helps the students learn more about how to grow their own self-sufficiency.

Here are photos of a teacher preparing and students enjoying the pipian (a Central American squash, C. argyrosperma, genus Cucurbita).

2020-08-03T20:44:02+00:00July 30th, 2020|

Café Mambo Fundraiser

Get some delicious food from Café Mambo in Paia, Maui, Monday June 15 through Tuesday, June 30, 2020, and help us build the auditorium this year at Instituto Augusto C. Sandino in La Carreta.
Mention the “Nicaragua Fundraiser” at Café Mambo, 30 Baldwin Avenue in Paia across from Mana Foods, and we’ll receive a portion of profit from each meal item ordered, dine-in or take-out (alcohol excluded). See menu & photos at, tel. 579-8021.
HOURS: Monday – Friday noon to 8:00 pm and Saturday/Sunday 8:00 am to 8:00 pm. ¡Gracias, Alfredo and Daniela of Café Mambo!

2020-06-16T19:30:39+00:00June 16th, 2020|

A tasty snack gives energy for learning

At Instituto Augusto C. Sandino secondary school in La Carreta, head teacher and Language Arts instructor Luvy Uriarte Lainez has been encouraging attendance and bolstering the students’ capacity for attentive learning by making and serving them a refresco (a healthy fruit smoothie) with a bakery roll each morning before classes start. This is served in the school’s new kitchen/cafeteria room. These photos were taken before the teachers and students started wearing masks or bandanas (panuelos). Head teacher Luvy and community members are currently sewing cloth masks for the teachers. Money for the material was sent from Somos Ohana Nicaragua in March.

Although the virus has not struck the municipality of Villanueva seriously, and rural cases of infection are much lower than in the cities, many parents are fearful of infection and keep their children at home. However, quarantine is still voluntary, and since most kids don’t have the option of on-line learning as they have no computers in their homes, a certain number are still attending classes at school.

2020-06-14T19:28:27+00:00June 14th, 2020|

Almost finished

The fence around Instituto Augusto C. Sandino is almost finished, and a fine, solid porton, or gate, has been added. The encircling fence will protect school gardens and facilities from entry by 2- or 4-legged opportunists. In the future, farm animal husbandry education is planned for the secondary school, and there will be some animals to keep inside, too.

2020-04-07T19:21:39+00:00April 7th, 2020|

Our scholarship college students carry on

As the world’s people face the uncertainty and challenges of the novel corona virus, the Nicaraguan college students who are receiving scholarship help from Somos Ohana Nicaragua are in various stages of their work toward a degree.

We are very proud of the following students and will continue to support and encourage them in their dreams to make a better life for themselves, their families and their country.

  • Elizabeth Montes: finishing the last steps in getting her license as a Speech/Language Therapist.
  • Arlen Mercado: finishing her monograph, accepted to enter an RN program this year.
  • Kareling Estrada: writing her monograph in Social Work.
  • Nayeli Diaz: in her 4th year of studies for Social Work.
  • Lener Montalban: in his 3rd year, studying to become a Social Studies teacher.
  • Miguel Angel Castillo: in his 2nd year in IT Engineering, Systems of Computation, to teach the teachers of the Ministry of Education, as well as students.  Formerly a teacher at La Carreta, he  is now volunteering at the Instituto (high school) in Villanueva.

These 6 are in addition to 11 graduates who were supported in their education by Somos Ohana Nicaragua, with the invaluable help from our donors, and who are now working professionals.

2020-03-25T02:05:09+00:00March 25th, 2020|