3rd Annual Rio del Cambio Fundraising Festival

Dear Friends of Rio del Cambio

Thank you to all who supported and attended the 3rd Annual Rio del Cambio Fundraising Festival. It was a great success!! We once again had a picture perfect day with blued sky and warm temperatures. The plan to host 100 people somehow grew to 125 in the final moments. Everyone graciously mingled with new friends and old as the event unfolded. “Randolph and the Riviera” did a great job of warming up the crowd with a fun and funky selection of tunes. Beckon then took the stage and, as always, gave a wonderful performance of soulful music. David Celia, new to our event, rounded out the evening with a mix of musical styles and entertaining stories. It is due to the willingness of these artist that donated their time and talent that the event was such a success. We also made a number of organizational and logistical changes this year that seems to have worked out very well. Feedback has been very positive!

Jim and his crew from Country Meats, Utopia did a masterful job of BBQ’ing including a whole stuffed pig. The food was delicious, hot and beautifully presented. Everyone had plenty to eat, and yet there were only 3 small containers of leftovers in my fridge the next morning!

To date, the event raised just over $11,000. We are very grateful for the generosity of so many who made this possible. During the event, we also received 11 new Sponsors for children in the Learning Program and donations for 14 water filters. This amount raised at the 3rd Annual Rio del Cambio Fundraising Festival combined with a generous donation of $3000 from the Barrie-Huronia Rotary Club, and individual donations earlier in the year, means we are only 23% short of our 2013 Budget requirements.

There are still 14 children that need Sponsors as a result of the growing enrolment at both the elementary and high school levels since February.

For just $100, you can sponsor a child for a year and purchase a water filter for a family. Donations to the General Budget will be used to support the Farm Co-operative which assists the farmers by buying seed, fertilizer and tools. The farmers then pay back to the program at the end of the growing season based on the success and profitability of their crop. The planting season begins in early August and is harvested in late November.

Elias Gaitan, Rio del Cambio’s Project Manager in Citalapa, will be delivering 15 water filters to the village on Saturday. He will also be confirming the number of homes that as yet do not have a filters (which is about 15). By the end of July, we hope to have a water filter in every home in Citalapa. These are vitally important as the villagers are currently experiencing higher that normal levels of illness due to the heavy rain and humidity combined with a lack of running water in the village during the month of June. This was due to a blown transformer that feeds the water system. The transformer has now been repaired but time is needed to clean and restore the chlorination system. However, the entire country of Nicaragua is experiencing an epidemic of illness. We instructed Elias to consult a Health Professional who has prescribed appropriate medication for the villagers. Rio del Cambio will be funding the purchase and administration of medicine to the people of Citalapa as needed.

There are a number of donation pledges that are still to be collected, and I have received several emails this week asking for the best way to make a donation. My first suggestion is by using Paypal on our Donation page you can make an etransfer to . Good old “snail mail” works well too. Please make your cheque out to Rio del Cambio at 3714 20th Sideroad, Innisfil, Ontario L9S 2Y1.

I would like to say a very special “Thank you” to my family, Doug, Devon, and Darci who all went above and beyond the days leading up to the event by working long days to complete my “to do” list. Also, to Randy Parson, our amazing Music Manager. Without Randy, we would not be able to present the quality of entertainment that we do. Randy graciously volunteers his musical talent and passion to Rio del Cambio and the event. He provides wisdom and vision that helps to keep the event fresh and exciting. We look forward to seeing you next year at the 4th Annual Rio del Cambio Fundraising Festival!

It is through your generosity that Rio del Cambio is able to continue it’s work in Citalapa, Nicaragua. Please know that the people of Citalapa understand and greatly appreciate your ongoing support. You are truly making a difference in the lives of over 100 children and their families.

Thank you!

Please feel free to contact me at if you have any questions or suggestions. We value your feedback and interest in this social enterprise. Also, we encourage you for forward this information to any family members or friends that you think might be interested in supporting our cause.

With great sincerity and appreciation,
Kari Williams
Director, Rio del Cambio

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