UNITED BY FRIENDSHIP INC

The Small Organization with a Big Impact

aka UbF   |   Espanola, NM   |  www.unitedbyfriendship.org

Mission

The mission of United by Friendship is to partner with communities in Latin America to provide humanitarian and infrastructure assistance that will improve health care, access to education, clean water and sanitation, and economic development.

Notes from the nonprofit

United by Friendship, the small all-volunteer organization with a big impact, is a well-respected charitable organization dedicated to working with Latin American communities to improve access to education, health resources, economic development, clean water, and sanitation. We focus our work in towns and villages that have identified needs and are prepared to act in partnership to make their project a reality in a sustainable way. We have an excellent cost/benefit ratio, which is largely due to the organization having no paid personnel and very low overhead. Additionally , UbF has on-site project coordinators who assist in the selection of projects and assure engagement of the beneficiaries, using local resources whenever possible, matching the appropriate technology with the situation, and working in partnership with the regional government and the local community members.

Ruling year info

2004

Executive Director

Ms. Deborah E Simon

Main address

336 Camino Santa Cruz

Espanola, NM 87532 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

61-1471905

NTEE code info

Community, Neighborhood Development, Improvement (S20)

Ambulatory Health Center, Community Clinic (E32)

Agricultural Programs (K20)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Many communities in Central America struggle with chronic poverty, poor health, inadequate education and malnutrition. Many lose hope of being able to provide for their families. In desperation, many fathers leave their families and travel north to somehow find work in other countries . Most are unsuccessful, and the fractured family's suffering only increases. UbF wants to help communities change the course.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Access to Health Care

UBF is partnering with the Department of Rural Health of Uspantan, Guatemala to provide needed medical equipment and emergency transportation to the remote villages of this region. The equipment includes an ambulance to transport patients from the villages to the hospital, a portable ultrasound to accurately diagnose issues related to pregnancy, and two motorcycles to provide vaccines and medications to villages which can only be accessed by trails.

Population(s) Served
Indigenous peoples
Families

UbF is providing a scholarship to the young man who coordinates our projects in Guatemala, enabling him to earn a bachelors degree in environmental engineering. During the week he works out of the Department of Municipal Planning Office with the Uspantan county government. On Saturdays he rides the bus for 3.5 hours to the University extension center where he takes a couple classes every semester.

Population(s) Served
Students
Indigenous peoples

Guatemala has the highest rate of malnutrition in the Americas. UbF is working with local families of the remote region of the Zona Reyna to change this. UbF, along with the Peace Corps and some Rotary clubs in Texas, have partnered with the Zona Reyna farmers to construct an agriculture learning center where improved farming techniques will be taught. The community of La Parroquia donated land where diverse crops with more amino acids can be cultivated. This is an example of how we can work together to make a significant difference.

Population(s) Served
Families
Indigenous peoples

Dental care services are not something most people in the remote villages of Guatemala have ever heard of. Consequently, rotting teeth and abscesses are common where children chew on sugarcane on a regular basis. UbF has partnered with a group of Guatemalan dentists to provide both preventive and restorative dental care to the students of rural communities. UbF provides the supplies and the Guatemalan dentists provide the services for a week each year. Dental hygiene classes are taught and each child receives a toothbrush.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth
Indigenous peoples

Where we work

Affiliations & memberships

United Way Member Agency 2009

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

United by Friendship builds relationships with people living in remote, impoverished communities, with the aim of working together with them to address some of the most basic human needs - clean water and sanitation, decreasing maternal/infant mortality, education, access to health care and economic development. We work to enable the people of Latin America to thrive in their own communities.

UbF conducts site visits to learn what impoverished communities need to improve their quality of life. The UbF Teams evaluate the following when selecting a project: basic needs, engagement of the entire community in participating to make the project a reality, available local resources, number of beneficiaries, cost, likelihood of sustainability, participation by the regional government, and need for further educational resources. The community must agree to supply the unskilled labor, the regional government is expected to provide the skilled labor, and UbF will provide the materials and arrange for needed training. Site visits are completed annually to assess the sustainability of prior UbF projects and provide any updates and retraining as indicated. We have developed strong networks among the local people and governments in the communities where we have completed projects, and we have a local on-site coordinator who speaks the Mayan languages of the region and oversees the day to day progress on projects.

We have a strong network of skilled individuals in Guatemala who oversee the design and execution of the UbF projects. We work with the local people as much as feasible, and we purchase materials within country or the region to support the local economies and so that repairs and replacements can be easily accomplished. We work closely with municipal governments and health departments to provide oversight and training, which is further facilitated through our local coordinator, who is fluent in several Mayan languages. We have a broad donor base in the US, a modest endowment to help with our work, and a close connection with Rotarians in the US and Guatemala who support our project work in Guatemala. Over many years, we have established a high level of trust between ourselves and the Guatemalan people and their respective community and organization leaders.

1 - The rates of gastrointestinal illness has decreased in the communities where UbF has constructed clean water and sanitation systems.
2 - Students in 7 villages now have improved access to education due to construction of new schools and girl's attendance in school has increased.
3 - In a school where children were frequently sent home due to the extreme cold in the poorly constructed school, the rates of attendance have increased after UbF repaired the school building.
4 - The wages of the farmers who have an irrigation system provided by UbF have more than doubled due to their ability to farm year round .
5 - The weavers in one village have improved the quality of their products remarkably over the past year; however, they are still lacking markets for their textiles due to their remote location. UbF is hoping to help them develop markets through tourism within Guatemala, as well as markets abroad.
6 - Improved nutrition due to UbF support of an Agricultural Learning Center.
7 - Decrease in dental caries and abscesses due to dental teams providing intermittent dental care and associated hygiene classes to students.
8 - To broaden the UbF donor base.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization collecting feedback from the people you serve?

    Focus groups or interviews (by phone or in person),

  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve,

  • What significant change resulted from feedback?

    With the advent of Covid-19, we consulted with a variety of stakeholders as to whether to proceed with our annual site visit to the project sites in Guatemala. Those stakeholders included members of the on-site team that was scheduled to travel to Guatemala to work with our community project, the mayor of the region where we would be traveling and the leadership of the regional Guatemalan Health Department. The consensus was that we should not travel to the Guatemalan communities but to instead focus on supporting them from the USA. This entailed doing projects focused on providing health resources ( including PPE and medical equipment) and nutrition.

  • With whom is the organization sharing feedback?

    The people we serve, Our board, Our funders,

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    We don't have any major challenges to collecting feedback,

Financials

UNITED BY FRIENDSHIP INC
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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UNITED BY FRIENDSHIP INC

Board of directors
as of 5/10/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Tim Salazar

Salesforce Inc.

Term: 2016 - 2019

Deborah Simon

Presbyterian Health Systems

Tim Salazar

Sequoia Solutions

Tricia Johnson

INTERA Inc.

Linda Moore

Retired/Jeweler

Allen Macomber

Retired Citibank

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? No
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 01/26/2021

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Decline to state
Disability status
Decline to state

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

 

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data

Equity strategies

Last updated: 01/26/2021

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

Policies and processes
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.