Enactus Supports Organization in Honduras During Spring Break

By:
Julena Allen, sophomore communication major

Enactus members from Southwestern will travel to Honduras this spring break on a mission trip for Pan American Health Service. But unlike normal mission trips, this one will not focus on evangelical, medical, or health initiatives, but on helping an organization that is seeking to stand on its own.

Pan American Health Service is a non-denominational Christian organization operating in the mountains of northwestern Honduras. Its goal is to develop happy, healthy productive children through nutrition and education.

The goal of Pan American Health Service is to develop happy, healthy productive children through nutrition and education. The work of Enactus, such as their work here at Navajo Nation last year, helps make that possible.

“Pan American Health Service is in a unique position strategically and is at a point of transition as an organization,” say Joshua Michalski, assistant professor in business administration and a trip sponsor. “It has some difficult decisions to make in the near future with its existing resources and strengths. We’re just starting a partnership with the organization and both sides intend this partnership be long-lasting.”

According to Michalski, the main purpose of the Enactus mission trip is to:

  • Establish a foundational relationship with Pan American Health Services;
  • Explore possibilities for scalable, sustainable projects that fit the Enactus framework and are compatible with the goals of our team and meet the needs of the local community;
  • Engage with the technical school by providing tangible, immediate resources that enhance their mission of providing skills that lead to employment.

To assist PAHS effectively, Enactus must understand its organization better as well as the opportunities that exist within. As a result, the mission trip is largely exploratory in nature to get a feel how the PAHS organization works. The students will be using the entrepreneurial and business skills they’ve learned while being a part of Enactus and seek to help assist PAHS in their need. They intend to provide the role of consultant now and in the near future build on that skill with teaching the role of project manager.

“We intend to find growth and transition opportunities that can build on their existing strengths, skills and knowledge and that are consistent with their mission,” Michalski states. “PAHS has tackled malnutrition and the poverty cycle through the care of children and the training of parents successfully through the years. We intend to build on their existing success through expanding the technical training and education programs as well as new economic development initiatives that will fight the cycle of poverty.”

 

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This is not the first mission trip for Enactus. Ana Patterson, business professor and Enactus sponsor, has led previous trips to the Navajo Nation, building greenhouses and providing agricultural needs and infrastructure. Another group from Enactus, led by Patterson, will be continuing this project over spring break this year as well.

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Photos: Previous Enactus mission trips to the Navajo Nation were to build greenhouses and provide agricultural needs, infrastructure, and training. 

 

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