Maria Obando Diaz

We are pleased to be able to share another partner farmer story with you. Please meet María Obando Díaz. This is her story in her own words.

“My name is María Obando Díaz, I am 48 years old, mother of five children; three boys and two girls.  I am a beneficiary of the Nueva Jerusalen land bank, in Guapotalito, in el Tuma, la Dalia. Nicaragua. I live with two little grandchildren ages of 2 ½ and 3 ½ years and all my children are working outside the community.”

“All my life I worked in farms, with a machete.  Every day I had to do it, even if I was sick, because they could fire me.  What I earned was not enough to save and buy my own plot.  There were times when there was no work in the farm.  They gave me a place to stay but I had to go and look for food in another place; so sometimes I only ate cooked bananas that some people gave me.”

“Nine years ago, while working at Hacienda San Jose, a man named Denis Centeno, told me that he had been financed by an organization, at low cost and with long-term payments, and he urged me to apply.  My lack of faith did not let me act, but 15 days later he told me again and I decided to make a request.”

“On January 30, I completed 9 years on this plot of land and being a member of Acción Medica Cristiana.  I came with my children and at first it was difficult, and I did not think I had the capacity to pay.  There came a time when I thought I would leave and go back to work at the farms, but the engineer told me, ‘you already have what you need, now it’s just work and that you do very well.  Stop the fear and continue.’”

“Thanks be to God, I do not lack food because in the plot I produce plantain, bananas, yuccas, malangas. I never thought I was going to sell my own coffee or cocoa, now I do it from my own farm.  I believe in God that soon I will pay my plot, that I am going to inherit it to my children so they can work it and sustain me when I can no longer work.”

“Those words encouraged me and I gave up on leaving the plot.  My children and I started working.  Today I have three manzanas (5 acres) of land that I never thought I had. 1 mz has coffee, with ½ in development and ½ productive, I also have 1.5 mz of cocoa that in 3 years will be productive.”

“Having this plot is a blessing.  My two grandchildren with whom I live are now food secure.  I feel the relief of being in my own house, plot and work, without the fear that if I get sick, they can fire me.  I only have to thank God and all who make it possible for many families like mine to enjoy their own land.”

Support Farmer to Farmer and help other farmers like Maria. Please choose “Nicaragua: Farmer to Farmer” from the dropdown menu.

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