Tag Archives: expansion

Visions for the Future, Major Initiatives Ahead

2016 promises to be a year full of exciting new initiatives and the continuation of ongoing effective ministries. Here is a sneak preview of what’s ahead:

Clean Water at Point of Consumption

There’s a tsunami of clean life-giving water coming! Following the initiatives of the St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church (Dunedin, FL) in Honduras and Comunidad Connect in Nicaragua, HOI has validated that the implementation of in-home water filter systems has a dramatic effect on the reduction of water-borne illnesses in our areas of operation. In response to this acquired knowledge, HOI has launched a major initiative partnering with groups and villages to implement a comprehensive hygiene education and filtered water program for hundreds of families in Honduras and Nicaragua. This effort will be jump-started by a generous grant from GlobalX, funded by the annual North Point Community Church “Be Rich” Campaign. Additional financial support will come from the recently launched Family Health Partnership program ($39 per month if you’d like to join) at HOI, and also from group community development support. The plan is to work with select mission teams to help provide education and materials for this effort. Local participants will commit financial resources and also invest time in training to learn the value of good hygiene, clean water consumption, and care and maintenance of their filters. Teams will help construct support tables and also assemble the filters and buckets for delivery. Our goal in 2016 is to install point of consumption filtration systems in at least 1000 homes. We have enlisted support from public health experts and the CDC to advise and monitor our program and results.


Honduran family with a water filtration system in their home

Expanding corporate partnerships in Southern Honduras

HOI has executed a third corporate partnership in southern Honduras, joining forces with another outstanding corporate organization that wishes to help improve the lives of the people living in that area of the country. An agreement of mutual support was signed with the Chorotega Foundation, the faith based philanthropic arm of the Chorotega Credit Union in Choluteca that is dedicated to helping start and nurture small businesses in Honduras. Chorotega will assist HOI teams with the logistics of working in the South, and will help our local staff build relationships and partnerships with the people we’ll serve. We hope to send a few teams with our new partner in 2016, so if you’d like to be an early adopter, just let us know. These are wonderful people to work with, as are our initial two partners Agrolibano and LUFUSSA, so we know you will have very rewarding and impactful experiences. We still have room for about 7 more teams with our partners in southern Honduras for 2016 if you’d like to help us in that area.

Camila Reina, HOI Director of Development and Gov't Relations (Honduras); Jerry Eickhoff, HOI CEO; Jorge Nuñez, Chorotega

Camila Reina, HOI Director of Development and Gov’t Relations (Honduras); Jerry Eickhoff, HOI CEO; Jorge Nuñez, Chorotega

Increasing medical support in the South

One of our medical team partners will be making a trip to San Lorenzo and Choluteca in 2016. In addition to these professionals, HOI would like to increase its logistical support to the two major hospitals in the area, Hospital San Lorenzo (HSL), and The Hospital of the South (Hospital del Sur, HDS). HSL is a smaller, well run institution that is becoming a model for the country, due in large part to of the efforts of our partner Agrolibano Foundation and other corporate sponsors.

HDS, on the other hand, is a very large public hospital that is underfunded and in desperate need of additional resources and support. Although the corporate partners are also helping this large organization, they are in need of significantly more resources. Upon a recent visit the massive over-crowding, lack of supplies, and equipment were heartbreaking to witness. The maternity ward, for example, delivers on average about 6,600 babies per year.  As a result of the hospital’s poor conditions, it has become the norm for two women and their new born babies to share a bed with no sheets or pillows. There is also no potable water in the 250 bed hospital. HOI would like to play a catalytic role with local and international resources to help continue improvements at HDS so the health care professionals on staff can be much more effective serving the people of Choluteca.

Our goal is to help both of these hospitals initiate a combined MAP (map.org) medication shipment in early 2016. Agrolibano will arrange the financing fee for this shipment.
We would also like to work with MedShare (medshare.org) for a medical supplies and equipment shipment to the Hospital of the South. We plan to work with Honduran corporate sponsors and other supporters to make this a reality. We are currently working on inventory needs, internal controls, and accountability to ensure efficient implementation.

Expanded educational and sports programs and ministries

Due to the success of our elementary and middle school programs, and growing demand for higher education and skills training in our area of influence, HOI is investigating the feasibility and advisability of developing a high school and career academy near Rancho el Paraiso. The flame of learning has been ignited in Olancho and almost 100% of our Hope Middle School graduates now desire to continue their education beyond the 9th grade. Building on our early economic development successes motivated by our catalytic agent, Smoke Rise Baptist, HOI places a high priority on job creation for the people of Olancho. To that end, our initial thought is that any additional educational offerings should include skills and career training.

Our evaluation will also consider the potential for a robust faith based athletic program that would be focused on soccer for boys and girls.  We are considering a sports and family life complex that would be used for the school activities, leagues, faith and skills coaching, Young Life, and community gatherings. This planning and review is in its initial stages and there are no determinations yet. However, we wanted each of you to know the types of initiatives we’re considering if you’d like to join us in the effort.

As a wonderful 2015 comes to a close, and an exciting 2016 looms in the future, I wish you all a blessed Holiday Season and a healthy and happy New Year. Thank you for your continued generous support and unceasing prayers.

God bless,



Jerry Eickhoff

Letter from the CEO: Celebrating 25 Years of Miracles and Transformation


It seems like just yesterday that Archie Crenshaw, Joe Glenn and I were pulling a van over a muddy mountain trail in rural Honduras trying to get to the Tegucigalpa airport for our flight home. Twenty-five short years ago, that trip was the genesis of an organization that was to change thousands of lives, both North and Central American. I no longer question whether God told Archie to take me to Honduras, but I often wondered for years if he really called Archie to Honolulu!


Now, twenty-five years later, HOI is celebrating its Silver Anniversary through a series of events in the Decatur and Atlanta area highlighted by a congratulatory visit from President Juan Orlando Hernandez and the First Lady of Honduras, along with a host of other Honduran government officials.  We will also honor four individuals who have supported our organization for many years in quiet, yet powerful, ways: David Allison, Joe Glenn, Barbara McCullough, and Ubaldo Ponce.  You are cordially invited to engage with us on Thursday, November 13, for this festive fundraiser and celebratory evening as we reflect upon our twenty-five years of transformation in Central America. www.hoi.org/rsvp


HOI’s Rancho el Paraiso, in the Agalta Valley of Honduras, has been the backdrop to countless numbers of miracles over the last twenty-five years.  With God’s grace we continue to see people and communities transformed.  Young Life has established a prominent presence in the Valley and you can literally hear the sounds of joyous youth resonating through the hills.  Medical miracles continue to take place, not the least of which is the near elimination of infant mortality in the area. Recreational organized soccer for boys, girls, men and women is on the way to foster friendships and a greater sense of community. The HOI schools continue to transform the lives of children and give them a brighter hope for the future.  The school grounds themselves have received a face lift that reflects the robust academic environment that has been created and maintained, including a modern computer lab that will allow students to compete more equitably in the global marketplace.  These are but a few of the innumerable miracles we celebrate.


Over the years, thousands of North Americans have joined in the effort to partner with the people who live in the 130 villages that surround our base in Honduras. Our faith-based approach to sustainable community and economic development, agriculture, education, and healthcare has stood the test of time, now becoming the model for our growth throughout the region. HOI has expanded to northern Nicaragua and southern Honduras to further the impact that began in the Agalta Valley. We are looking for many more teams that are eager to partner with the villagers in these areas, who long for a healthier and more economically sound life. Our mission is to help build up communities through sincere engagement with the people who live there and learning their needs and priorities.  We want to become catalysts of change by providing resources and helping to identify opportunities so residents will have the ability to create communities they are proud and want to remain in to raise their families. There is much work to be done, but HOI is fully committed to follow God’s will and help the transformation continue.

As we continue to look back and press forward, join us as we celebrate the past 25 years of progress and ENGAGE with us as HOI approaches the next 25 years. Help us recognize and honor what God is doing in all of our lives!

To register for the event, visit www.hoi.org/rsvp or email Caitlin McCormick at ljwilling@hoi.org


Jerry Eickhoff, CEO

New Site Location in Southern Honduras


HOI has been working to find expanded ways to positively impact the lives of the people of Central America. In addition to growing current ministries in Honduras and Nicaragua, HOI will soon add a third location in the town of San Lorenzo in southern Honduras. This exciting new ministry will expand HOI’s mission, scope, and focus, and gives teams yet another option for service.


Landscape overlooking waterfront in San Lorenzo

The genesis of this effort stems from a request by HOI’s Honduran nonprofit partner Fundación de la Sur, which represents several large corporations in southern Honduras familiar with HOI’s work in Olancho. To begin the relationship, representatives from these companies visited the ranch to witness firsthand the results of HOI’s efforts. After several reciprocal meetings and site visits, including research and beta teams, HOI has enthusiastically agreed to begin sending volunteer teams to implement a faith-based partnership in the area.


Representatives from LUFFUSA

In order to facilitate this ministry, HOI will work alongside Fundación de la Sur’s social responsibility team to coordinate projects to improve the quality of life for the people in the villages where many of the sponsoring companies’ employees live. Two of the leading companies in this effort are Agrolibano, the largest melon producer in Honduras, and LUFFUSA, the power company in the southern part of the country. Their initiative in this effort demonstrates an important shift in the way that Hondurans take leadership to address social problems within their country.


Representatives from Agrolibano

The dormitory facilities that will house teams volunteering in San Lorenzo are located close to the Pacific Ocean and the borders of Nicaragua and El Salvador. Because the climate of San Lorenzo differs from that of Olancho, team members can expect the temperature to be significantly warmer, and must take special care to stay hydrated. Volunteers will continue working through community health-driven infrastructure projects, similar to those in Olancho, and medical personnel will work alongside local practitioners in area hospitals.  HOI’s beta team, working alongside Fundación de la Sur, has already completed two projects resulting in the construction of one latrine and ten new floors.   Team members will also begin doing home visits with members of the community and will provide Vacation Bible School for the children.


 HOI will partner with Fundación de la Sur’s and members of the San Lorenzo community

HOI will continue to share additional information about the opportunities to serve in San Lorenzo in the coming days. In addition to San Lorenzo, there is also a need for more teams to serve in our northern Nicaragua location. This area has provided amazing adventures for those that have traveled there in the past year and will continue to do so.

Please join us in praying for more teams to serve in each location. To learn more, please contact Laurie Willing.