On World Water Day, LMDF explores Pana Pana’s recently launched water and sanitation loan product with Lucia Law Blanco, the company’s general manager.
Pana Pana’s main mission is to improve the quality of life of men and women that have limited resources, but a spirit for overcoming hardship. They support people in projects focused on improving the standard of living, including house improvement, access to safe water and sanitation and also on micro-credit for small businesses.
Recently they started a pilot implementation programme for water and sanitation products in three municipalities of the Northern Caribbean coast of Nicaragua where the shortage of safe water and improved sanitation is a factor that affects the level of poverty in indigenous communities in both rural and peri-urban areas. To date, the company have successfully responded to a total of 820 families directly in 14 rural communities and two peri-urban areas in the municipalities of Puerto Cabezas and Waspam, with recuperation systems for rainwater (SCALL), perforated wells, improved wells and ecological toilet systems.
In the pilot phase, they have also served a total of 10 families through micro-credit with recuperation systems for rainwater, perforated wells, improved wells and ecological toilet systems. This product has had a very beneficial impact in improving the quality of life of clients. Beneficiaries are very happy with the system because it has enabled them to have access to safe drinking water as well as ecological toilets in their homes, which has improved health and hygiene within the home. Women and children have a better quality of life since they no longer have to carry water over long distances and have more time for other activities.
Pana Pana is an indigenous Nicaraguan NGO, active in the North Atlantic Autonomous Region (RAAN) where over 70% of the population lives below the poverty line.
Founded in 1990, Pana Pana started its microfinance program in 1997, making it a pioneer NGO in the region. The area it operates in has an autonomous legal status and has been self-governed since 1990. The cultural, linguistic and political differences make it a marginalized region.
In this very poor and isolated region of Nicaragua, the access to safe water and sanitation is a real challenge. Together with the Fundación Interamericana and WaterAid America, Pana Pana has, to date, been able to meet the direct needs of more than 800 families with rainwater recovery systems, perforations, improving wells and ecological sanitation.