Postcard from Honduras: This bank small but effective

POSTCARD FROM HONDURAS

Mark Richt was nearly 1,400 miles away from the Georgia Bulldogs’ practice fields this week, touring impoverished areas of Honduras served by the Christian charity organization World Vision International. It was his third visit to Honduras , but the first time any media has accompanied him. This is the last of daily postcards provided by AJC reporter Steve Hummer, who followed Richt and his wife Katharyn to chronicle their trip. Look for an in-depth report on Richt’s journey in Sunday’s AJC.

The Richts laugh as they listen to a presentation Thursday morning at the Better Future Community Bank in Gracias, Honduras. (Photo by Steve Hummer/steve@ajc.com)

The Richts laugh as they listen to a presentation Thursday morning at the Better Future Community Bank in Gracias, Honduras. (Photo by Steve Hummer/steve@ajc.com)

TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras — Back home where he is somewhat well known for coaching a college football team, Mark Richt is in a position to hang out with some well-fed cats. He schmoozes with big boosters, does endorsement work for such corporate giants as Coke and Ford, is buddies with many of the movers and shakers inside the Gold Dome.

On Wednesday, he met with some capitalists on a little different scale.

The Better Future Community Bank, a project in Gracias, Honduras, seeded by World Vision, allows the poor to take out small loans that traditional banks would never consider. Loans for as little as $20 to begin some minor enterprise that helps feed a family.

On this day, Richt met a woman who took a loan to buy clay and sand with which to fashion pottery for tourists and cookware for locals. Another woman told the story of using a loan to help her launch a tamale-making business. With the profits from her cooking, she fixed up her home and now rents out two rooms.

A young boy said he is saving his lempiras in the community bank in the hopes of one day buying a bicycle.

The scene appealed to Richt’s old-fashioned, “It’s A Wonderful Life” view of how that industry might work. “That was awesome,” he said as he left the meeting. “A bank designed to help a community, just think about that.”

After one last foray into the countryside to hear another plea for a fresh-water project in the village of Portillo, Richt’s tour of World Vision projects in this part of the world was done.

He and his wife, Katharyn, then took the five-hour ride back to the Honduran capital, back to a hotel where hot water was guaranteed, back one step closer to all the modern comforts.

There is a flight back to Atlanta on Friday afternoon, where the other world of high-pressure Saturdays awaits.

– By Steve Hummer

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36 comments Add your comment

JAWJeRDAWG

June 23rd, 2011
9:13 pm

May God continue to bless you, Coach Richt, as He has others through you. .. Go Dawgs!

UGA Alumnus

June 23rd, 2011
9:24 pm

Hope y’all have a safe flight home…

Max Sizemore

June 23rd, 2011
9:28 pm

Gracias a Dios (the full name of the place) is actually a nice, little town in a mountain valley. I have been there. There are (or were) actually some hitching posts on the streets where people could tie up their horses.

guy

June 23rd, 2011
10:50 pm

bitter(I mean silly and simple) jim donnan,How foolish a post can one type?

bigcalidawg

June 23rd, 2011
11:38 pm

Sum DAWGS can spell. I’ve read posts from Tech fans who were dang near illiterate.

Please see the humor……………peace….

Excellent

June 24th, 2011
12:04 am

Honduras is a beautiful place with people that have been really badly treated by, well, fate and, more specifically, their government and even our own CIA and the united fruit company generations ago. And World Vision is a great, gigantic organization that does a lot of good around the world.

tech buzz

June 24th, 2011
12:10 am

richt’s down in honduras, but he gets paid millions by taxpayers to coach in athens. what gives?

Barking Dawg 79

June 24th, 2011
12:38 am

Blah, blah, blah. Who cares?

Get home and get focused on beating Boise State and South Carolina and you can take the lake house off the market Coach.

joe

June 24th, 2011
2:05 am

tech buzz you imcompetent little insect every professsion involves a vacation. this is richts and i think it darn sure tells you what kind of person he is if he’s spending it helping people in honduras. im proud to have mark richt as the coach of my team

Saban

June 24th, 2011
3:11 am

Did they find the python that bested Choakdawg over the box of krispy kreme`s and ate him? What a terrible death for a dawg.

Richt bears direct responsibility for this trajedy. Choakdawg and Russ both eaten in the wilds of Honduras. What a terrible price to pay for a recruit.

JB

June 24th, 2011
7:18 am

tech buzz is an idiot. Richt’s pay DOES NOT COME FROM TAXPAYERS. The University’s Athletic Assoc. is a for profit organization creating funds from ticket sales, Radio and TV contracts, and private donations through the Hartman fund, tech buzz is NOT a Tech graduate we hope.

Gator On The Loose

June 24th, 2011
8:33 am

Russ the flawed bulldog

June 24th, 2011
8:53 am

Richt and the Missus invited me on the trip, but there is no way I’m going to that place. I have seen those pythons on Animal Planet, and I don’t trust Richt after the way he treated me last year. He has been too friendly with Crowell and that darned white puppy that was part of the Crowell package. I am in Athens, getting in shape for the season, like the Budweiser horse. I have been working on my backflip for the annual pool frolick, and I ain’t going back to the pound this time without a fight..

Whisky Breath

June 24th, 2011
9:07 am

Have any of you homers considered that Richt may be a phony? Enough is enough, if that guy is sincere about anything, I will eat my hat. He does these stupid trips to take away from the pressure of losing. You homers are not smart enough to figure it out.

hmmmmmmmm

June 24th, 2011
9:08 am

Yes, he is a very Good man….. He is to be respected for all the humanitarian work he and his wife perform…. Just wish his players respected him enough to stay out of trouble….

WDE

June 24th, 2011
9:37 am

@Whisky Breath nope we have never thought that CMR might be a phony…and we have never doubted you are a worthless lump of camel dung…oh and a troll.

newnancoach

June 24th, 2011
10:39 am

Answer this Whiskey if he is a phony, do you remember a kid living in his car then with a coach that early on at UGA CMR offered a scholarship to? Tony Milton? How about being one of the ONLY collegiate coaches that honors a schloarship to a player even if that player is injured? Or maybe adopting his two children, when he and his wife have kids of their own? would you like me to continue? Honestly his intergity and compassion is a breathe of fresh air in college sports.
QUESTION HIS COACHING, BUT NOT HIS CHARACTER! By the way my guessis that the closest you ever been to being an actually athlete was in third grade field day

Atl.Dawg1

June 24th, 2011
11:26 am

Whiskey he really stuck it to ya………jack wadd

EHouse

June 24th, 2011
12:39 pm

mICOR LOANS ARE EASY TO GIVE OUT, BUT HARD OT TURN INTO A FULL FLEDGED BUSINESS. I’D INQUIRE ABOUT THE SUCCESS RATE WITH THE LOANS, IF LESS THAN 50%, INVEST $$$ ELSEWHERE.

EHouse

June 24th, 2011
12:41 pm

cHRISTIAN ORGANIZATIONS JUST COPYING THE SYSTEM OF THE WORLD, YUNAS WON NOBEL PRIZE FOR MICRO LOANS TO THE POOR, WORLD VISION IS COPYCATING THE WORLD’S SYSTEM, THIS IS NOT THE BIBLICAL MODEL. THE BIBLE IS OPPOSED TO DEBT.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muhammad_Yunus

EHouse

June 24th, 2011
12:44 pm

AS ROMANS SAYS “OWE NO MAN ANY THING”. DEBT IS EVIL.

EHouse

June 24th, 2011
12:49 pm

GIVE MILLIONS TO YUNUS INSTEAD OF WORLD VISION IF YOU WANT TO DO MICROLOASN, HE WON A NOBEL PRIZE, KNOWS WHAT HE’S DOING THERE. WORLD VISION??????

Frank Lane

June 24th, 2011
12:53 pm

AGREE WITH QUESTION HIS COACHING AND RESULTS, not his character unless you are down among the poor helping also.

Frank Lane

June 24th, 2011
12:55 pm

Using your vacation that way also.

bigdawgdude

June 24th, 2011
4:14 pm

@Russ the flawed bulldog …. fell out of my chair laughing!! But, the BIG DAWG will eat this season…be afraid opponents, be very afraid!

Ugagrad74

June 24th, 2011
4:28 pm

To one employee, the rich man gave plenty ($1000.00) and the employee increased the value 10-fold, to another the rich man gave another employee ($500.00) and the employee doubled the money, and to the last employee the rich man gave still another employee $100. This employee hid the money under a rock so he would not loose the money. WHICH EMPLOYEE SHOULD BE REWARDED FOR BEING A GOOD STEWARD? The employee or caregiver who lives his faith by his actions! GO DAWGS!!

Snoop Dawg

June 24th, 2011
5:07 pm

Preacha Man reminds me of the movie Marjoe. You guys are chumps…

Terry

June 24th, 2011
5:53 pm

Snoop Dawg, Unless you have proof of what you are implying I would keep my thoughts to myself.

Mark 9:33-49
33 And he came to Capernaum: and being in the house he asked them, What was it that ye disputed among yourselves by the way? 34But they held their peace: for by the way they had disputed among themselves, who should be the greatest. 35 And he sat down, and called the twelve, and saith unto them, If any man desire to be first, the same shall be last of all, and servant of all. 36 And he took a child, and set him in the midst of them: and when he had taken him in his arms, he said unto them, 37Whosoever shall receive one of such children in my name, receiveth me: and whosoever shall receive me, receiveth not me, but him that sent me.

38And John answered him, saying, Master, we saw one casting out devils in thy name, and he followeth not us: and we forbad him, because he followeth not us. 39But Jesus said, Forbid him not: for there is no man which shall do a miracle in my name, that can lightly speak evil of me. 40For he that is not against us is on our part. 41For whosoever shall give you a cup of water to drink in my name, because ye belong to Christ, verily I say unto you, he shall not lose his reward.

42And whosoever shall offend one of these little ones that believe in me, it is better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he were cast into the sea. 43And if thy hand offend thee, cut it off: it is better for thee to enter into life maimed, than having two hands to go into hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched: 44Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched. 45And if thy foot offend thee, cut it off: it is better for thee to enter halt into life, than having two feet to be cast into hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched: 46Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched. 47And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out: it is better for thee to enter into the kingdom of God with one eye, than having two eyes to be cast into hell fire: 48Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched.

BG

June 24th, 2011
6:56 pm

God bless Mark Richt! Coach Richt is such a good man in a conference full of snakes.

Snoop Dawg

June 24th, 2011
11:12 pm

Terry, you should take your own advice.

Good man

June 25th, 2011
9:10 am

richt–a good man—but he better start winning the SEC east very soon or he will be out of a job. He can’t use mission trips to defend mediocre records.

old time dog

June 25th, 2011
1:25 pm

eYe don’t necessarily cARe what MarK riCHt does in his PrIvaTe lifE. What eYe caRE abOut iz WHAt Hee duZ coaching which LaTElY aNt been MUCh! eYe hoPE hee has sEEN the LIGHt.

old time dog

June 25th, 2011
5:07 pm

3Pointer….Fran is probably right.

mission man

June 25th, 2011
8:16 pm

adams and mcgarity–they can’t fire a missionary—it wouldn’t look good in the press.

DAWG FAN

June 26th, 2011
9:50 am

DAWG FANS: VOTE FOR UGA AS COLLEGE FOOTBALLS BETTER TRADITION VS NOTRE DAME ON ESPN. VOTE NOW!

http://espn.go.com/sportsnation/post/_/id/6681916/1-notre-dame-vs-8-georgia

Flat Tire on I-95 in Jacksonville

June 26th, 2011
11:02 am

I hope he can turn it around