Posted by Miguel Juanez On December - 5 - 2017 0 Comment

We at FWOP are building solid and important partnerships between AWOW, Rotary International, CATIE Institute, and Southwest Airlines. This past October, FWOP held a Summit at CATIE in Costa Rica and a video was created which can be viewed on FWOP’s You Tube channel.

Recently, the NT Daily of the University of North Texas wrote an excellent article on the summit. You can read it here:

The FWOP delegation was being trained in the town of Mollejones to be folkloric dancers


The pictures  was taken on our visit to Mollejones Community where CATIE assists locals in establishing viable rural sustainable tourism and connect them to a growing registry of important cultural sites. Our students and volunteers were asked to join into the spirit of the event. The picture was taken after a successful “interpretation” of a folkloric dance with the local children that erupted in laughter and smiles from everyone.

Picking peppers as part of the sustainable gardening in Mollejones

It was a long time in the making but this family finally secured the funding to build a greenhouse through cultural tourism backed funding.

Cultural tourism is where you visit a community with a goal of learning about the people.


They loved having us, and we loved visiting.

AWOW and the Lewisville Rotary Morning Club in Texas ( with FWOP and SWA support) created a pre-summit  and  a Dental out-reach project in Barrio in San Jose. The focus was preventive dentistry.

As a result of the Summit,  a Technology Training Center was established at the Sustainable House on the grounds of CATIE ,  a plan to secure funding for expanding the existing rural sustainable tourism network that consists now of four communities and finally, initial plans were made for the next Summit to be held in Nashville, Tennessee.   Various field schools from various universities and high schools are planned to go to CATIE to reinforce our initial steps to reduce poverty and expand sustainable business development.

The picture above shows a small air monitoring device developed by UNT and it is being powered by the Solar Shelter Kit system. I will be on display into the Technology Training Center.

At the Summit FWOP formally announced a new initiative – BUY ART FIGHT POVERTY — to assist artists and raise funds to support  to expand initiatives related to solar lamps for education, clean stoves to reduce pollution, and clean water across the global.   Take  a look at and send us artists of all ages to the website.

FWOP Nashville had visit from film team recently from Southwest Airlines . Focus was the upcycling of used leather from the seats changed out for airplanes. Veteran jobs are being created in Nashville and St Louis. Some leather has been integrated into activity programs in assisted living facilities.  The FWOP and afflitiates have managed to clean out tons leather used seats from the SWA warehouse in Dallas.

Here, the team discusses viable options for FWOP and how we can take our organization and partnerships to the next stage.

On the final morning we met to map our plans for Costa Rica , Nashville and beyond. More information to come.

Posted by Miguel Juanez On May - 26 - 2017 0 Comment

2017 FWOP World Summit International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development

Welcome! We are ready to begin registration. Please do so by clicking the REGISTER button on the sidebar.

October 4 – 6, 2017 CATIE Campus, Turrialba, CR

Pre-Conference Agenda

Sunday, October 1  – Tuesday, October 3, 2017

All day October 1 – 3, 2017 Experience a guided tour and eco-tourism opportunities with A-Wow project in Curridabat, San José

To learn more visit:


Conference Agenda

Wednesday, October 04, 2017

7:00 am to 9:00 am Registration and Reception
9:00 am to 9:30 am Opening Ceremonies

Dr. Muhammad Ibrahim, General Director CATIE

Sylvester Flores, Founder and President of Future Without Poverty (FWOP)

Dr. Eliécer Vargas, MIST Co-Director

9:30 am to 10:00 am Keynote Addresses:

Dr Todd Spinks,  Advisor, Sustainability & Citizenship, Southwest Airlines

10:00 am to 10:30 am Break
10:30 am to 12:30 am Session 1: Enterprise Development, Poverty and Empowerment

Eduardo Villafranca,  President of Reinventing Business for All (RBA)

Case: Hotel Punta Islita

Our Actions Matters  (7-10 minutes per partner)

Sylvester Flores, FWOP President. Business Development via the Ripley Gourmet Tortilla Factory, Ripley Ohio

Dr.Kendall Brune,  Executive Board FWOP /Development Director – Business and NGO partnerships

Carolyn  Wright , CEO – AWOW  and Rotary President- 2016-17, Lewisville Texas

ACTUAR Representative

Deguesew Derese,  International LLC , Dallas- Focus Africa

Dr. Syeda Jesmin, UNTDallas, Micro Loan Programs- Bangladesh Discussion

12:30 pm to 2:00 pm Lunch
2:00 pm to 3:40 pm Session 2: Environmental Promotion, Poverty and Empowerment

MSc Ana Baez, CCT President

Case: Biological Corridors in Costa Rica

Session Chair

2:20 pm to 3:40 pm Our  Actions Matters (7-10 minutes per partner)

Daniel Villafranca, Caminos de Osa

Dr. Maria Suarez Toro, PH.D Centro Comunitario de Buceo Embajadores del Mar, Caribe Sur Costa Rica/MsSc Marianita Harvey Project Beneficios del Mar, Costa Rica

Marianella Franklin, Sustainability Officier, UT Rio Grande Valley
Dr Arthur Lee, Community Health Advocate, Chair , ELAM Advisor Board, Nashville, Tenn.

Whitney Carr, UNT (University of North Texas) Future Without Poverty student chapter, “Denton to Nigeria: Clean Water”


3:40 pm to 4:00 pm Break
4:00 pm to 6:00 pm Session 3: Education for Sustainability, Poverty and Empowerment

Dr. Mario Piedra, Dean Graduate School at CATIE

Case: Graduate programs at CATIE and the UNSDG

Session Chair

Our Actions Matters   (7-10 minutes per partner)

Ishmaels Kabann, Uganda FWOP Kampala

Fernanda Ornelas , SUBIRE – K- 12 schools,  Guadalajara , Mexico –International Coordination, UNT graduate – Business

Dr.K. C. Birenda,  Master of Science in International Sustainable Tourism UNT/CATIE

Dr. Isabel Gutierrez, Prácticas del Desarrollo, CATIE

Brandon Morton, Sustainability Officer, North Lake College, Irving, Texas and Sierra Club Regional Director

6:00 pm to 9:00 pm CATIE´s International Club

Thursday, October 05, 2017

7:30 am to 8:00 am Continental Breakfast
8:00 am. to 5:00 pm Session: Implementation challenges – as real as can be.

Poverty reduction and implementation challenges: keep sharing knowledge but this time about implementation

Experiential CASE:  Rural Tourism in Mollejones of Turrialba. Here, we aims to attract people interested in sharing know-how at the community level. Mollejones is a remote agricultural community lacking traditional tourism opportunities but have found in community-based rural tourism a way to attract a select market. Come to see how the elderly and the young are been support by this initiative.

Experiential CASE: Santa Cruz, the Cradle of the Turrialba Cheese. Here we aims to attract people interested in small scale agriculture and livestock production. We will learn about challenges with appropriate technology, support systems, and community empowerment strategies.

6:00 pm to 7:00 pm Dinner
7:00 pm to 9:00 pm Parallel events

FWOP Board of Director Meeting

10 year of collaboration – UNT/CATIE

Network of Women for Sustainable Tourism


Friday, October 06, 2017

7:00 am to 8:30 am International Breakfast – prepare for all participants.

CATIE Botanical Garden and Sustainability Educational House

8:30 am to 9:30 am Session: Making FWOP work as a network of knowledge and support

Dr. Eliécer Vargas and Dr. Stan Ingman, Sustainability Educational House and Poverty Reduction

9:30 am to 10:00 am Break
10:00 am to 12:00 pm Our Action Matters – (2 hours for work in groups)- Some initial facilitators  listed below

Group Opportunity for Sustainability Educational House- Schools,  Colleges and Universities –  Dr. E. Vargas, CATIE

Group Opportunity for Costa Rica Network, Southwest Airlines, AWOW, FWOP , CATIE – Christine, Ortega , International Senior Advisor-Community Affairs/Grassroots/SW, Carolyn Wright, CEO-AWOW, Dr.Stan Ingman-FWOP

Group Opportunity for Sustainable Agriculture Cooperation

Group Opportunity for Academic Cooperation- Journals, You Tube Channel-FWOP,  Dr.Iftekhar Amin UNT Dallas, and Arthur Porter, Dallas Designing Dreams ,

Group Opportunity for Community Empowerment- FWOP Advisor Board-Ana Fores and  Andres Pacheco

Group Opportunity for Sustainable Appropriate Technologies Cooperation – Dr.Kuruvilla Johns, Chair, Mechanical and Energy Engineering, UNT. Kevin Peach, Solar Systems, and Tom Benjamin, Executive Board, FWOP,  Greg Ousley, Global Director of Development-FWOP and  Churchill Technology and Sustainable Development Center  – Fulton, Missouri

12:00 am to 2:00 pm Lunch at the Botanical Garden
2:00 pm to 4:00 pm Our Common Future as a Network – Planning our next meetings
4:00 pm to 4:30 pm Break
4:30 pm to 5:00 pm Impact of our conference on poverty reduction
5:00 pm to 7:00 pm Closing Ceremonies – Guess speaker (TBA)


After conference opportunities

Saturday, October 07, 2017

All day After conference trips – to be coordinated by Network of Women for Sustainable Tourism

Contact María Suarez Toro, Fundación ACCION YA

Posted by Miguel Juanez On December - 3 - 2015 0 Comment


Amanda Sunny, MPH,  Director, Exquisite Water, Inc. and Whitney Carr, Vice President of UNT FWOP Chapter and on the advisory board of Exquisite Water, Inc. recently returned from water testing in three villages in the State of Anambra, Nigeria. Two water treatment systems were also tested Rorus and Cascade Designs. They are going back to more testing in dry season and begin to implement an intervention in one village.  They have a fundraiser on crowdrise for their organization. Link to fundraiser:

Mexico – GuadalajaraColegio Union Mexico, affiliate of FWOP

In October twenty-eight students from Colegio Union Mexico (K- 12)  in Guadalajara arrived in Denton for a week at Camp Compass. Program included field trips in museums in Dallas and Fort Worth, a tour of zero net energy lab house at UNT, afternoon on organic dyeing of fabric, and an afternoon on recycling, waste water treatment, and methane gas for electricity at Denton Water-Recycling-Solid Waste complexes. Rotary and FWOP members had great dinner with these working class middle and high school students one evening while they were in town. We believe the students at CUM may start a solar cooperative at their school.

To see the visit to Bettye Myers Middle school in Denton, click here:!cum-visit/c1syt They visited class rooms and attended the soccer practice of a special program designed to reduce dropout rates from schools in Denton ISD. The program is entitled GOAL, it mixes soccer with mentoring and community service.

Ivory Coastivory Coast and UNT FWOP Teams

UNT FWOP and Ivory Coast FWOP hosted its first benefit dinner to support the establishment of two  solar lamp cooperatives in Ivory Coast in December.  One location is in the western mountain village and another will be in Abidjan, the Capital.


St Louis, MOAnthem USA Empowering the HomelessArbor Health Management

Anthem USA took over some six months ago Arbor Health for  veterans with mental  health and addiction challenges.  On Veteran’s Day they decided to look for homeless veterans and by weeks end two new veterans were moved into Arbor Health and take off the streets of St Louis.

Mexico – TepheuaTepehua's OB/GYN ClinicOB/Gyn Mobile Clinic

The Tepehua Centro in Chapala (operated by retirees and volunteers from barrio and region) is completing the OB/GYN clinic at the Centro soon  and they have a new van for their OB/GYN mobile clinic program that goes to other poor barrio near Chapala around Lake Chapala  area, southeast of Guadalajara. (

Costa Rica

UNT FWOP and FWOP leadership met with the Co-Directors of Sustainable Tourism (Dr. Dan Spears and Eliecer Vargas)  and the newly formed FWOP Graduate Student Chapter officers. We discussed their goals in Texas and in Costa Rica. We also began to explore if we may hold the 2017 Summit at university in Cartago, Costa Rica (Solutions for Environment and Development – CATIE – We will keep you posted.

Ugandan FWOP MembersUganda

The newly formed Uganda FWOP chapter recently passed out some 40 solar lamps to senior citizens in western Uganda. FWOP will work with this Uganda FWOP Chapter and CHC Foundation Limited to establish a solar cooperative in the coming months. Ishmaels Kabanukye, Chair of  Uganda FWOP Chapter is initially strongly focused  on poverty among elders in Uganda .   In the 16th of October,  he was elected as Chairman of Uganda Association of Gerontology and Geriatric Association. See photo above. This will provide a good foundation for FWOP to expand its impact in Uganda.

More details on our partnerships on the next round!

-Miguel Juanez