Family Support Project

“We all live with the objective of being happy; our lives are all different and yet the same.” -Anne Frank


In the rural, developing communities where GOA and its local chapters and partners operate, we naturally become aware of families who are struggling to survive and thrive. These families face a barrage of challenges. Challenges stem from numerous facets of extreme poverty, including but not limited to death of a bread winner, lingering sickness or physical impairment, high cost of education, lack of local opportunities, inability to find employment or to generate income, poor diet and malnutrition, limited access to water and other vital resources, etc. These challenges cripple families and keep them locked up in the vicious chains of poverty’s tight grasp.


Our Family Support Project, typically done in conjunction with our Team Expeditions, aims to first identify needy families and then to arm them with skills for empowerment, self-reliance and improved well-being. Program beneficiaries are handled on a case-by-case basis, and are typically recommended for support through local school management committees, school boards, parent unions, our local GOA chapters, or other partner affiliates. This program’s philosophy stems back to GOA’s push for relationship-based development and human building on an personal, one-on-one level.


Program beneficiaries (families) receive hands-on, tailored training  from GOA. All training is done in the families’ homes, and is carried out in a culturally-sensitive, area-specific fashion (keeping in mind that the needs/challenges of families in one country or village vary drastically from another). Training topics include micro-savings, business development, re-investment strategies, proper preventative health techniques, the importance of personal hygiene, balanced nutrition in diet, home gardening practices in limited space, crop rotation, propagation planting, inter-cropping and income-generating and subsistence agriculture. Due to the nature of GOA’s rural focus, our support is typically accompanied by the distribution of new seed types used in the application of the skills taught. Information regarding income structure, standard of living, and opportunity analysis is completed in conjunction with home visits in order to better understand the community and to measure short and long term development of targeted families.

This program also identifies opportunities for sustainable development solutions on a local family level. We work to consult, support  and implement programs in these areas that can benefit families on a sustainable level. Some opportunities for sustainable solutions include the introduction of bio-fuel, rain-water harvesting, aquaponics, solar power and other systems.

GOA’s Skills for Self Reliance Curriculum is also introduced on a case-by-case basis as an extra level of training support in hopes of promoting skills for home use and commercial purposes. Skills include how to make bar soap, liquid soap, shampoo, cow lollipop (salt lick for improved nutrition in milk), chlorine disinfectant (for water), disinfectant (for cleaning and washing utensils), tooth paste, hand sanitizer, and more. These skills provide beneficiaries with easily attainable opportunities for better health, hygiene, self-reliance and a generation of new income sources through the identification and usage of locally available resources and the introduction of home-made products into the demands of pre-established local markets.