Using a holistic approach focused on education, housing, economic development and health care The Rainbow Network helps rural Nicaraguans break the cycle of poverty. This is a look at the how’s and why’s of their model and lessons learned along the way.
Keith Jaspers started Rainbow Network in 1995 with his wife Karen as a way to share the success they had found in life. He served on the Habitat for Humanity Board with former President Jimmy Carter, Millard Fuller and author Tony Campolo among others. Using the lessons he had learned from his time with Habitat and the profits from their own hotel business the Jaspers decided to start a ministry where there was a real need and a scarcity of organizations already at work which is how they landed in Nicaragua. No longer in business, he devotes his full-time effort to the operation and development of the ministry.
The Rainbow Network is an interdenominational Christian Ministry working in rural Nicaragua with about 42,000 people who live in 112 specific geographic communities. Their model involves significant community participation and is led in-country entirely by Nicaraguans. Their housing program has provided a pathway to homeownership for over 1000 families to date who otherwise were living in mud huts or scrap houses. Their microfinance program has provided over 75,000 microloans with a repayment rate of over 98% helping families break the cycle of poverty. Click to learn more about The Rainbow Network