The UST Social Entrepreneurship Program is ecstatic that we have not only reached, but gone above and beyond our goal of raising $5000 to build a honey processing plant in the Yucatan Peninsula! Words cannot do justice to how extremely thankful we are for everyone who has kindly supported us and generously donated to our efforts to break the cycle of poverty in the lives of Mayan women honey producers. Thank you! United we can and will overcome poverty with dignity!
SEP Student Executive Board and UST faculty with Mayan women entrepreneurs in the Yucatan Peninsula, November 2013
WHO WE ARE
We are the Social Entrepreneurship Program, a student-operated co-curricular service-learning organization working under the umbrella of the Center for International Studies at the University of St. Thomas in Houston, Texas. Our purpose is to alleviate poverty and empower impoverished individuals around the world by sponsoring development programs and microfinance loans. Our revolving loans are interest free and meant to help develop efficient and sustainable programs to establish self-reliant entrepreneurs while advancing important values such as freedom, democracy, and capitalism with a human face. The program also seeks to apply theories learned in the classroom to practical real world situations where students get to engage in service learning by assessing poverty first-hand and becoming agents of change that promote education, women empowerment, fair trade, cooperation, and social entrepreneurship around the world.
THE YUCATAN PROJECT
SEP’s project in Mexico is very exciting. It is based within Tesoco Nuevo, in the Yucatan Peninsula, and with the help of our field partner Ayuda Para Ayudar we attempt to break the cycle of poverty in the lives of 150 impoverished Mayan women. 100 of these women entrepreneurs engage in the production of Habanero pepper salsa, and 50 work in the production of honey and other basic agricultural and artisanal enterprises. In addition to working in a supportive and welcoming environment, SEP has helped to turn these Mayan women into self-sufficient entrepreneurs and renewed their sense of self-confidence, trust and pride, as well as enabled them to provide for their families and communities. However, there is still a lot of work to be done. Due to lack of resources, the honey produced by the Mayan women of Tesoco Nuevo is stored in reused water, juice, and yogurt bottles, which is less than ideal. In order to continue to foster the women’s financial independence by enabling them to properly bottle and market their honey, they need a honey processing facility. And that is why we need your help.
OUR GOAL AND HOW YOU CAN HELP
In order to build the honey processing plant in the Yucatan Peninsula, we will need $5,000. The plant will serve to provide the Mayan women entrepreneurs with a safe, effective, and healthy way to bottle their honey, which will certainly increase the honey’s quality. The honey processing plant will also serve as a space for the women to create labels for their bottles, which will increase the honey’s marketability and enable them to sell it in neighboring communities. Properly bottling the honey will therefore help to improve the women’s financial independence, which consequently improves the lives of their families and the wellbeing of the community as a whole. Your donation will help our efforts to continue to transform the Mayan community within the Yucatan Peninsula become a reality.
Every dollar counts. A small donation from you will make a world of difference for the Mayan women entrepreneurs of the Yucatan Peninsula. If you cannot donate, please help us spread the word and share this campaign with your loved ones, friends, family, neighbors, and everyone you know via social media!
Our program relies on the cooperation of many people, including students and faculty at the University of St. Thomas, members of the Houston community, and global activists and citizens like you. Our student executive board has created this electronic campaign through which we invite you to become a part of a beautiful and exciting movement to promote economic development and better life quality for people who need it the most. Join us in becoming the change we want to see in the world!
The Social Entrepreneurship Program
4121 Yoakum Blvd. Houston, Texas, 77006
(713) 525 3530