Aura Estella Mendoza is the ICDP representative at the INPRHU organization in Ocotal, Nicaragua. She explained how COVID-19 had affected their work in 2020.
The ICDP team at INPRHU had to change their working hours and were forced to reduce their coverage, as a result of which they attend less adults and children in their projects then originally planned. At some point they were not allowed to meet in person, so they used the radio to communicate the content of the ICDP messages. However, the good news is that by mid March 2021 all went back to normal.
During 2021, they will be organizing new ICDP workshops in order to train in ICDP some of their new staff, particularly since two of their ICDP trainers left the organization in 2020.
INPRHU has institutionalized ICDP in their programmes called: comunicación social (social communication), intervención familiar (family intervention) and also in their work with teachers. This means that they apply the programme with families, teachers and directly with children. All ICDP work is documented.
In 2020, they visited families whenever that was allowed by government policies related to the pandemic and the facilitators held ICDP meetings not only with mothers, but with the whole family. This is a policy which they established in order to help families in general and in particular those families that are often plagued with problems related to violence. According to Aura, the ICDP roll out produced good results and it proved to be effective in the family circle; ICDP was accepted by mothers and fathers.
The INPRHU is a big organization that is present in different parts of the country. It is 64 years old, although it was only registered in the 1980s due to political reasons (a government change facilitated the registration). The founder was a professional in Managua, who became Minister in 1980s and began working on many social projects all over the country. He died twenty years ago but the organization is still continuing. It has long established donors that have been contributing regularly for 10, 15 and even 20 years. The founder’s hope was that INPRHU would reach 100 years – which is still their hope. There is an INPRHU national centre in Managua, and Aura attends their board meetings where future plans and policies are discussed. Funding comes from abroad, as well as inside the country.
From 2018 a new law was introduced in Nicaragua requiring organizations who receive funding from abroad, to fill in forms and produce a new type of documentation. Such organizations have to have Constancia de cumpimento – which is a government document confirming that they have produced and submitted all required documents. INPRHU managed to prepare all these new documents, which was a huge and rather stressful task during 2020. They are now waiting for the confirmation certificate from the government, which is taking time as there are 2000 NGOs in Nicaragua.