Our key partner in San Francisco Libre is Apreden, an autonomous local non-governmental organisation (NGO) working to support development in San Francisco Libre. Apreden stands for the “Asociación Para la Recuperación y El Desarrollo Ecologico de Nicaragua”: Association for the Restoration and Ecological Development of Nicaragua. It means “they learn” in Spanish. It is led by an elected committee, currently chaired by Sr. Jimmy Zamora. The committee oversees and reports on local projects, consults with the community on local needs and priorities and produces proposals for funding. The work of Apreden is assisted by German “gap year” volunteers recruited and supported by Nicaragua-verein Oldenburg.
An Apreden committee meeting
San Francisco Libre is twinned with Oldenburg in Germany. Reading and Oldenburg have been working together in support of San Francisco Libre for more than ten years. Oldenburg helped to set up the school scholarship programme and Reading has been contributing to this successful programme for many years. The Oldenburg volunteers under Apreden direction deliver and monitor projects and assist communications between partners. They operate a major environmental project, La Guayabita tree nursery; the Community Library; La Biblioteca, and their much larger scholarship scheme.
Some Oldenburg volunteers and friends at the Apreden library