There are a number Lake Chapala charities...
... and, if there is something you would like to do but don’t see here, then you may want to consider filling the need yourself. Many people come to the Lake Chapala area and find a whole new lease on life and often that is because they have found a way to give of themselves and make a difference.
The Lake Chapala Foundation
Rick Feldman, of Niños Incapacitados, saw the need to bring all the Ajijic and Lake Chapala area non-profits together and the Lake Chapala Foundation was born. Although still on the ground floor, this company offers all Lake Chapala charities the ability to be under one umbrella, with the goal of uniting Lakeside non-profits and providing strength in numbers. Basically, the Lake Chapala Foundation is a United Way for this area that centralizes various needs. In this way, charities have a larger pool of resources, manpower and money to draw from.
This offers so much more in the way of resources, a cash pool and volunteers than anything we have seen in the Lake Chapala/Ajijic area before. LCF acts as the tax deduction umbrella and distributing umbrella; 100% of the proceeds go to the designated charity. No one at LCF receives a salary and every participating charity has equal representative in the foundation.
Some of the Lake Chapala Charities under the LCF umbrella are:
- Amigos del Misión San Pablo
- Rotary Club
- Casa de Ancianos
- Love in Action
- Hope House
- Terranova School
- Niños Incapacitados
- Pasos Milagrosos
- Niños de Chapala & Ajijic
- Golden Strings
- Wilkes Education Center
- Lakeside School for the Deaf
- Cruz Roja/Red Cross
Charities working under the Lake Chapala Foundation
The LCF’s list of Lake Chapala charities is impressive and so if someone feels led to give to a certain charity the money—100% of the donation!-- is distributed to the charity named. All of the charities have agreed to comply with the foundation’s specifications to operate under full accountability and transparency as well as cooperate with each other so that all may benefit.
I had the pleasure of speaking with Meme Thorpe about the Lake Chapala Foundation. Meme arrived in the lake Chapala in April 2007 at the age of 50 from Bloomington, Illinois. Meme and her husband Rich, who work at the Hope House home for boys, facilitate short-term mission teams or people who want to come to Mexico and serve others.
Through Meme’s work as the volunteer coordinator at the Hope House, she joined the LCF as it began to form. Now she’s on the board of directors at LCF as their secretary. According to Meme, “The Lake Chapala Foundation provides an additional network to Lakeside non-profits, the expatriate community and the Mexican people. I decided to get involved with the LCF in order to help Hope House and now I see the scope of this and it’s huge!”
Meme sees herself as bridging the gap between the work being done in Ixtlahuacan and the Lake Chapala and Ajijic expat community. “I delight in giving people who come here the full flavor of this unique area. I love helping people connect and find their place,” she says.
As secretary of the Lake Chapala Foundation, Meme says, “The beauty of the LCF is that it helps organizations help themselves and become pro-active instead of just relying on the generosity of the foreign community. Mexicans need to start investing in Mexico.” Which is exactly what is beginning to happen under LCF.