San Ramón, Nicaragua
Location | San Ramón, Nicaragua
Service Opportunities | Support a local coffee farm cooperative, gardening, eco-agro-tourism
Cultural and Recreational Highlights | Visits to coffee farms, jungle walks, wildlife viewing, visits to the famous cities of Leon and Granada.
While in San Ramon, students will critically engage with selected readings on Central America as well as international development and its alternatives. They will learn about agrarian transformation in Central America, the history of the Nicaraguan revolution, democratization, international trade, cooperativism, micro finance, alternative approaches to development, and social movements. The service and academic exposure will combine with intercultural experiences to create a forum for reflection on international and domestic development, community-driven service, intercultural communication, and global citizenship.
The program’s main campus will be located at the Fundación El Sueño de la Campana a hotel and cultural center situated on a 9 hectare farm in San Ramon, Nicaragua. However, a portion of the trip will be spent at the Cooperative La Hermandad hosted by the Mairena Family. Students will stay the night in their newly constructed eco-hostel just steps away from the rainforest preserve and coffee farm. Students should expect adventurous camp-like accommodations during their three night stay. The views, rainforest, farm, flora, fauna and family will be unforgettable.
Lodging | Guest houses, hotels, and rustic bunk room at farm
Food | Vegetables, fruits, corn, rice, beans, chicken, coffee
Flights | Fly into Managua international airport
Visa | Yes, obtained at the border
Communication | Cell networks, internet, etc.
Closest Airport | Managua, Nicaragua
Our Community Partners
La Hermandad Cooperative: This family initiative cooperative was started in 1993 as a farm, focusing on coffee production, with social mission. The goals of Le Hermandad are to preserve and restore ecology through agro-ecology tourism. In addition to growing and processing coffee, the cooperative also supports a small primary school on-site for the children of the local and extended community, including the children of the farm workers, as well as adult education classes focusing on gardening and nutrition.
While coffee is the major economic supporter of the cooperative, they recently established a large garden with the goal of achieving food sovereignty for the cooperative. The garden also serves an educational tool for community education projects. Amizade volunteers visiting the cooperative will learn about the coffee production process from growth, through harvest, sorting and preparing the beans for roasting. Volunteers may also work in the garden and assist with other projects around the farm.
Fundación El Sueño de la Campana: The foundation was established through support from groups from Spain with the idea of “Receive, Give, Share” and the intention of establishing an organization that generates sustainable jobs in the town of San Ramón, with special emphasis on women and youth. The foundation supports community projects through community education and trainings with a focus on self-sustaining projects social transformation.
The foundation campus includes a hotel, restaurant, bar, cultural center, classrooms, and lecture hall. In addition to the operation of the hotel and restaurant, the foundation offers an after school program for area youth, adult education, and community and cultural events. The foundation also partners with a number of agricultural and artistic cooperatives in the region, including La Hermandad.