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M.A.I.S. is active in Nicaragua since 1990 and has been working, from the very beginning, with Adecac (Asociacion de campesino a campesino) in Santa Rosa del Penon, Leon department.

The area has been destined for many years to an intensive exploitation of natural resources, through mining activities (gypsum mines, gold, wood ) and agro-industrial activities (cotton, peanuts, sugar…) for export.
Through the strengthening of community organisation, it was possible to create an organisational and productive system putting the farmers and the inhabitants of the area at the centre of local development.
Adecac is mainly composed by farmers and breeders that, in addition to traditional cropping such as maize, beans and sorghum, integrate family production with the development of different agro-environmental potentialities of the area. A network of promoters has been created in the local communities: they support small producers in the planning of their housing development, in the techniques of agro ecological production and water and soil conservation, in the storage and trading of their products. Within this network, exchange of goods and services has become the basis for human and economic relations. This community network has allowed small farmers to get and independence from external technicians, giving an added value to the local capacities.

The production, depending mostly on seasons and climate, is destined to local consumption. Surplus production is bought by Adecac and stored.  This allows producers to get a higher income and to avoid the brokerage of coyotes that, being the only way to the market, force small farmers to sell their products at very low prices. At the same time, this system allows small farmers living in the area to buy most cereals and legumes – which constitute the basis of their diet – directly from local farmers and the local community to eat organic food for a more convenient price.

The fight against gender-based discrimination and knowledge sharing
(aprender haciendo, learning by doing) were the basis of the work done and have allowed to start the local library, to carry out recreational activities for children, to build the community tourism centre, to start micro enterprises run by women for the production and the commercialization of cosmetics, natural medicines, underwear garments and food products.

In Nicaragua, M.A.I.S. has promoted a national and regional campaign against sexual exploitation for profit: family violence has been studied and faced, through education and psychological support activities, and it was activated, with the participation of local partners, a protection network at municipality and national level. We have always been collaborating with the local associations, such as CEB (Comunidad eclesial de base), Proyecto Miriam, Mary Barreda.