Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Practical/concrete ways to pursue for connecting ideas with actions to help Honduras

Our friend Tambopaxi has raised one of the most important questions for those of us who are away, but who want to contribute as much as possible with Honduras: How do we do this?

At this point, I have a few pointers and a few leads but am ready to hear some of your ideas. Certainly, it is in the best interest of our country, that Mr. Pepe Lobo succeeds in delivering a different administration, especially that of his predecessor Manuel Zelaya Rosales, but of all presidents before him. We need real change, and that is something that we need to strive for in the next elections and beyond.

Here are some options for participation. Some of these options may be dead, not active or not effective. Updating status is one thing I will need to find out. Obtaining a direct connection with the president himself, or as direct as possible, is always a possibility, finding out how to do this is another issue.

Foro Nacional de Convergencia (FONAC):

Red de Desarollo Sostenible (RDS-HN):

Transformemos Honduras:

Project Honduras:

Alternatively we could also go through a different route and create a brand new platform for discussion and presenting concrete proposals to Mr. Lobo. Hmmm...let me think about this....


  1. Hi, Jose,

    Thanks for the post and ideas! I went through the links you cited, but unfortunately, there's not much in them.

    The GOH's Convergencia site was set as emergency response to the events of last June, and then it went moribund. Still, it could serve as blank template for a new effort in the visioning/planning direction, if the Lobo government elects to do something substantive.

    The RDS site doesn't have much to recommend at this point, unfortunately.

    The Transforemos site is nice, but it's one (religious) sector making their aporte, and it's more from a small project point of view.

    The Project Honduras (HAM) site is a very cool mapping arrangement that might be useful for a larger initiative, should one get started...

    ....Which brings me back to your thinking aloud at the end of the posting. I dunno, it may come down to our having to get something started ourselves, which sounds bizarre, but sometimes that's exactly how big things do start up...

  2. Well, the FONAC has been going on for a while more than June. A friend of mine participated in some of earlier deliberations while he was working with UNDP and later as part of the National Anti-Corruption Council ( which BTW is another forum for discussion.

    I've been toying for a while with the idea of developing an Online Discussion Platform (Communities of Interest/Discussion) which are setup having very specific topics for discussion at a time, on a schedule basis, and with the idea of coming up with formal proposals to deliver to somebody in power.

    These groups can be by invitation only and/or by application and subsequent selection based on a set standard. Originally I was hoping to involve my old alma mater, Escuela Agricola Panamerica (Zamorano University) as an institutional backup...but I was thinking then in a narrower scope on agriculture and development policies..but can be expanded...

    Anyhow these may be another idea to ruminate on...

  3. "I've been toying for a while with the idea of developing an Online Discussion Platform (Communities of Interest/Discussion) which are setup having very specific topics for discussion at a time, on a schedule basis, and with the idea of coming up with formal proposals to deliver to somebody in power."

    Jose, I think you are exactly on the right track. A serious discussion forum is badly needed.

  4. Hi, Jose,

    I agree with LG and you. I don't know about you guys, but I have no sense as to what Lobo y cia have in mind regarding the future - but I don't think that should stop us. How do we go about setting up an ODP? How can I help?

    On ODP topics, I should say that I lived seven years in Honduras and eight here in Ecuador, and I see certain similarities between the countries in the problems that they face. As well, I've seen some improvements in certain areas here such as tax collection and management and control of the national teachers' union, which was just as bad, if not worse than the one in Honduras. En fin, there may be (positive) experiences here (or from other countries) that might be replicated in Honduras.

    ---Anyway, just some ideas, to start.

    More later, keep on truckin' and stay out of the snow!

  5. One small comment to would be a big mistake to discard readily religious organizations from any of the discussions. One of the things learned from the Zelaya mess was the power held by the "Evangelical/Protestant" and "Catholic" churches and organizations in shaping not only politics, policies but also in terms of resources and efforts for development in Honduras.

    I can even venture that if you want to be elected President you really have to talk with the Evangelical Confederation and the Catholic Church in Honduras to find convergence points. Otherwise you are probably not going anywhere.

    I'll write about this in more detail in a post...Cheers!!!

  6. UCD seems to be the group with the most clout, but they have failed miserably in keeping up an informative website. Their own public statements, press releases are not even posted there. The site does have a little used discussion area. I just found out recently about their website and that anyone could join and receive their mailings.

    There are too many groups! UCD seemed the solution to unite them in a force to be reckoned with. I don't know if they would be interested in hosting a forum, but that could be a good idea -- if someone was going to pay attention to the discussions. I think they are squandering their power through lack of communication.

    I agree with Tambopaxi that those from other countries (especially Latin American countries or other formerly poor countries) could offer relevant knowledge/experiences.

    One day in a fit of frustration, I wrote an article asking why Honduras (gov't) has to start from scratch and learn everything the hard way -- "because this is Honduras!" -- instead of benefiting from the experiences of other countries. Honduras didn't have to reinvent the airplane, or cell phones, or computers, so why reinvent the education system, as just one example?

  7. ¿Foro? Pero ¿cuál foro? ¿El de ustedes 'cinco gatos' (nosotros sólo somos 'cuatro', según su adorado héroe. Se te fue uno de más), dándose palmaditas y aplausos? Claro: "hablar, ideas, reconciliarse..." si no nos asesinan antes a los cuatro (ya van más de cuarenta, en todo caso). Foro de almas en el infierno, o en el cielo, tal vez. En Honduras -tierra- en todo caso, van a tener que arreglar el desastre que dejaron creyendo arreglar algo a los golpes. Aquí estamos. A ver que hacen!. (Y la Gringa, que salga a la calle y arme su FORO, pobrecita!)

  8. Anon 11:40am:

    Here we are interested in developing a forum to provide rational and fact based discussion and diagnostic with what is wrong with our country Honduras. More important than this initial step is to propose intelligent, well designed, feasible solutions to the many issues we face as a nation.

    The old defeatist mentality of name calling, hatred, disunion, demagoguery, stupid populism, will not have a place in these discussions. Our enemy are not the UCD, los camisas blancas or the "Resistencia", NO, our enemies are poverty, hunger, illiteracy,poor o no access to health and other "poor country" issues which are our targets to overcome.

    So, any way we can contribute to alleviate these problems will be welcome. How to connect with the people in power and to propose intelligent ways to break public and private monopolies, develop a more just country, and to ensure prosperity for all,and make them work, are our challenges, which will take participation by everybody and anybody who truly wants to work on this challenge.