Recently, Laura Libman, President of Tia Foundation gave an interview to the Thunderbird Alumni Magazine. We thought there were many important questions asked that may give you some good insight into the work we do…and love. (en espanol debajo)
What prompted you to start the Tia Foundation?
I spent part of my childhood with my extended family in Mexico, going to school in Guadalajara and summers on a ranch in rural Mexico. I fell in love with the people there. Toward the end of my education at Thunderbird, I had difficulty finding NGOs who were using the successful ID models that I learned about in class; the models that create independence and sustainability.
I also discovered that in most cases, the downward spiral of poverty in rural areas of Mexico was often precipitated by something health related. A farmer would get injured or his wife would die in childbirth, which meant that productivity suffered, so they produced less food for the family and nothing left over to sell. Then everyone in the family would become malnourished and consequently more prone to illness and less productive. Trying to prevent that first precipitating event would do a lot to improve quality of life.
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