Bless Rural Families With Clean Water and Opportunities to Prosper

For poor families in Chinandega, Nicaragua, the simple act of trying to quench their thirst makes their children sick and takes a heavy toll on their time and resources. The very thing their sons and daughters need for life — water — is what leaves them bedridden, unable to go to school, unable to thrive.   

You’ve seen the difference a modern water system makes for Nicaraguan families. Now join us as we set our sights on El Raisal, a humble farming community that lacks a clean water source. This is the year El Raisal’s water woes can end — with your help! Your support will connect every home to clean, abundant water. You will also strengthen a pig farming program that will empower families throughout the region to rise out of deep poverty.


Install one professionally designed water system to filter and pipe clean, abundant water & deliver it directly to 70 households, blessing 292 people.


Equip families to become independent pig farmers and boost their income by funding a new piglet production facility.

Community Transformation

Bring dramatic, sustainable change to transform the lives of Nicaraguan families and their communities.

Join Cross Catholic Outreach this spring to bring sustainable change to communities plagued by dirty, unreliable water sources and by a lack of economic opportunities. Make God’s love visible by responding to the cries of the vulnerable and coming alongside them to fight chronic dehydration, reduce waterborne illness, and give poor farmers the jump-start they need to grow their businesses and support their families.

Give today to extend Christ’s love to families desperate for clean water, good health and a path out of abject poverty.

Clean, abundant water brings health, renewal and hope to Nicaragua’s most vulnerable families.

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Nicaragua's Water Facts

Deadly consequences of inadequate water sources

  • Rural Nicaraguan communities often depend on hand-dug wells that are easily contaminated by animal waste, pesticides and other disease-causing impurities.
  • Children get frequent intestinal illnesses and miss school.

Kidney failure, often caused by dehydration, is the No. 2 cause of death in the country.

30% of rural Nicaraguans are in need of improved water sources. Read more.

3 in 10 Nicaraguans are in need of an improved water source.

Dirty water is a major health threat in rural Nicaragua.

Striving for Water

Outside each house is a barrel of water. It may look clear, but it is riddled with poisons — seepage from dirty latrines, animal waste, pesticide runoff. The more it rains, the dirtier the water gets. Then the rains stop, the wells dry up, and field workers fall victim to severe dehydration. In many cases, the result is kidney failure and death. Learn more.

Caught in a Spiral

These families are trapped in misery that seems inescapable. Uneducated and cut off from opportunities, they cannot afford basic necessities like clean water and sanitation. The resulting illnesses further incapacitate them and drain their resources, pulling them deeper into poverty. They need long-term solutions that will quench their thirst and empower them to thrive.

Clean water is essential to helping Nicaraguan families rise out of abject poverty.

Sustainable Solutions to a Thriving Future

End the water crisis. Empower families.

For families trapped in the cycle of poverty and deprived of basic needs like clean water, it can seem like there is no way out. But time and again, we have watched people just like these experience real, tangible change. The key is to work with their communities, respecting their human dignity and equipping them to have an active role in their journey. They contribute labor and resources toward constructing their clean water system, they learn best hygiene and sanitation practices, and they take charge of long-term maintenance of their system.

Water Systems & Community Health

Quenching thirst, fighting illness and maintaining access to clean water for years to come.

Economic Opportunities

Working alongside families to boost incomes and self-sufficiency.

Community Transformation

Training and equipping local leaders inspires and encourages lasting, positive change.

Water Systems & Community Health

A holistic, sustainable solution to rural Nicaragua’s water crisis

To further protect the local water supply, an important goal is the eradication of a manmade source of contamination — pit latrines. That’s why, in addition to installing clean water systems, our Chinandega ministry partner also tries whenever possible to build modern bathrooms. Each bathroom unit empties into its own septic tank so that disease-causing waste does not seep into the environment or contaminate drinking water. In some cases, a water system and bathrooms are provided together. In others, the relationship begins with just a water system — but this opens the door for bathrooms to be installed at a later time as long as the community agrees and the funding is made available.

The ultimate goal is comprehensive health as the community is transformed with:

A clean water system.

Water access points at every home.

Modern bathrooms with toilets, sinks and showers.

Sustainable water access for years to come.

A clean water system.

Water access points at every home.

Modern bathrooms with toilets, sinks and showers.

Sustainable water access for years to come.

Long-term transformation requires a change in mindset and habits.

Health education helps a community get the maximum benefit from its new water system.

Education is essential

The poor need to learn the dangers of dirty water, how to protect children and families from illness, and how to maintain access to clean water for years to come.

Community leaders play an important role. They not only train families in preventive health education but also collect urine and stool samples from family members in order to diagnose and treat parasites and kidney disease.

Give now to be a part of this proven solution, or continue reading to learn more about how clean water and sanitation can transform a community.

Economic Opportunities

Equipping the poor to climb out of poverty

The broader goal for the Chinandega communities is not just clean water but also stronger, more self-sufficient families. After the water issues have been solved, programs are introduced that can empower families to increase their income. These efforts focus on what rural Nicaraguan families know best: farming.

Small-scale business opportunities can empower Nicaraguan families to rise out of abject poverty.

One economic opportunity: pig breeding.

Piglets bred by our local ministry partner are given to farmers to raise. Those farmers are equipped with training, pigpen materials, feed and veterinary services. After a farmer has fattened his pigs over a four-month period, he returns the pigs to our ministry partner to sell at the market. The profits are given to the farmer. Learn more: Promoting Pigs, Produce and Empowerment in Nicaragua

Community Transformation

Building faith, inspiring leaders and breaking generational cycles of poverty.​

Cross Catholic Outreach and our local ministry partner are dedicated to community transformation. We began serving in Chinandega in 2007 with a project to relocate 36 families from the garbage dump. Since then, we’ve worked alongside our partner on numerous projects, providing water, sanitation, nutrition, preventive health, microenterprise, school construction and the love of Christ.

Forging relationships with rural communities and building on each success produces significant, communitywide change. Your support of Cross Catholic Outreach can advance this holistic mission of hope.

Water beneficiaries contribute sweat equity by digging trenches for the pipes.

Transform Lives in Chinandega

Be the answer to the prayers of the poor.

Join us and become a life-transforming conduit of Christ’s mercy by answering the call of the needy for clean water and a prosperous future. Make their dreams come true by providing a modern, reliable water system reaching 70 households; by funding a new piglet production facility; and by playing a role in the broader cause of community transformation. Your generosity makes this work possible!

Invite families on the margins of society to come and drink (Isaiah 55:1) in Jesus’ name. Your prayers and compassion will have a lasting impact!

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Cross Catholic Outreach

Our mission is to mobilize the global Catholic Church to transform the poor and their communities materially and spiritually for the glory of Jesus Christ. Your gift empowers us to serve the poorest of the poor by channeling life-changing aid through an international network of dioceses, parishes and Catholic missionaries. This cost-effective approach helps break the cycle of poverty and advance Catholic evangelization.

Proceeds from this campaign will be used to cover any expenditures incurred through June 30, 2021, the close of our ministry’s new fiscal year. In the event that more funds are raised than needed to fully fund the project, the excess funds, if any, will be used to meet the most urgent needs of the ministry.