Brenda’s blooming piñata business

Brenda lives in the rural town of Tepecoyo. She owns and runs a small piñata making business in the center of town. Brena started the Women’s Empowerment Project in February of 2023 and since then she’s shown a passionate commitment to participating in the activities and has expressed how much she’s eager to learn.  Brenda started […]

Meet our newest 3 staff members!

Our work continues to grow and significantly impact more Salvadoran families and, as we move forward in the creation of new projects, we are happy to share that the Programa Velasco family is also growing. Today we introduce you to the 3 newest members of our team: Wendy, Ricardo, and Aida. Wendy is the new […]

The Strength of Women: More Real Than Ever

Founded in November 2019, “The Strength of Women” (La Fuerza de las Mujeres) is a Savings and Lending Group (SLG) made up of twelve entrepreneurs who graduated from the Women’s Empowerment Project (WEP). When they started, none of them could have imagined what they were going to confront and achieve. The goal of the Savings […]

NEW: Families United Project in Tepecoyo

Programa Velasco’s goal has always been to create a positive impact in the lives of Salvadoran families, aimed at breaking the cycle of violence, gender inequality, and poverty in which they live. With the new Families United Project in Tepecoyo, PV is building on its strong history of social impact work and commitment to the […]

Meet Raquel

My name is Raquel Torres and I am a rising sophomore at Marquette University, double majoring in Political Science and Latin American Studies. I have spent the summer virtually interning for Programa Velasco, and the experience has been something that I will forever be grateful for.  I was born and raised in Chicago, but my […]

The challenge of coloring and drawing for Salvadoran rural women

For a lot of people, coloring and drawing can be a very natural, relaxing, and even therapeutic activity almost like any other, if we are familiar with these actions. Other people may feel insecure because they don’t know if they’re doing a good job or they consider it to be an activity only for children. […]

How do the WEP Self-Saving and Lending Groups work?

As a part of the Women’s Empowerment Project(WEP), participants create self-savings and loan groups, called GAAP for its meaning in Spanish, in the communities of Tepecoyo and San Ramon since 2019. The methodology was inspired by a community initiative made by Catholic Relief Services (CRS) and it involves making savings and loans with funds from […]