Who we are
ACHC is a humanitarian/social-service organization dedicated to working with children, families, and their communities in the city of Chicago and our country of Honduras by providing funding, resources, and assistance to alleviate poverty.
ACHC has been legally active for three years, but many of our board members including founder and Executive Director, Ms. Elena Melendez, have worked to send various forms of aide to persons in Honduras for over a decade.
In the city of Chicago, we have promoted the union between Hondurans and Central Americans through cultural events, informative workshops, business expositions, counseling, and forward referencing to lawyers, doctors and hospitals, insurance agencies. We have been present in big cultural events through food, performance dances, music, with the purpose of helping to educate all communities in the city of Chicago of our Honduran traditions.
Our mission is to provide funding, resources, and assistance to alleviate poverty in children and families of Honduras.
We understand that times are rough for everyone, which is why our fundraising is always focused on mutual benefit, like our Woman’s Expo and Family Expo that provides businesses an opportunity to network and members of the community a chance to receive resources at no cost to them. We also organize events like the Central American Festival and Toy Drive Gala, and bring internationally recognized artists to entertain and promote Central American culture in the city of Chicago so that everyone feels they get something in exchange for their contributions. Every Christmas, over 300 orphans receive personalized gifts from families all over the city of Chicago in our annual Christmas Angels.
Funding is used to acquire the necessary resources that we then distribute to orphaned children and families in the country of Honduras. Resources include food, clothing, water, electricity, medicine, and educational supplies. There is also a strong relationship between our organization and many educational facilities, which has been used to provide scholarships to the youth in Chicago.
Fundraising is to the benefit of orphaned children and families in the country of Honduras, and a local branch of funding used to the benefit of local families in need.
Asociación de la Cultura Hondureña en Chicago was founded in 2013 by Elena Melendez, Marcos Garduno, Lourdes Garduno, and Elena Ramon – visionaries and activists in local communities for the distribution of knowledge on Honduran culture in the city of Chicago. Many of the original goals of the four were aimed at developing social events and participating with outreach groups. Due to mitigating personal circumstances, both Lourdes and Marcos Garduno had to take a step back from leadership positions, participating independently when available, leaving Ms. Melendez and Ms. Ramon to take charge of the organization.
Both Ms. Melendez and Ms. Ramon shared a passion and history for helping orphaned children in Honduras as personal endeavors, and it was this same passion that helped their decision of bringing such a massive and demanding project to the forefront of the organization. The response was instantaneous and what began as personal projects with the care of two children living with a nun, soon expanded to the groups seen today.
In three short years, ACHC has taken over the primary care of over 300 children divided amongst four orphanages, a number which continues to grow as centers reach out for help, and a rehabilitation center who cares for homeless men living with drug and alcohol addiction, but also takes in permanent residents who have mental and physical disabilities.
The ACHC mission continues to flourish today and works with members of all communities regardless of race, ethnicity, religion, politics, age, or profession, all with the vision of one day seeing a humanitarian and socially aware world.
Be part of ACHC and help us help!
At the international level, we have partnerships with orphanages and community based organizations in Honduras, although our long-term plans include reaching out to centers throughout all of Central America. At the moment, the organization has helped these centers with food, clothes, school supplies, funding for utilities and maintenance, and we are in the current process of developing a library in the Orfanato Fundación Señor San José orphanage in La Paz, Honduras.
- The organizations that we help are those that have been working with their communities for many years and take on all children in need.
- The children in these centers suffer extreme poverty, daily hunger, illiteracy, and some physical deformities due to malnourishment.
- Currently there are over 350 people who benefit from the help provided by ACHC, and we foresee that number doubling by the end of 2016.
- ACHC has, as it’s primary goal, to help as many people as possible both in Honduras as in Chicago. This includes orphans, families, young students, single mothers and fathers, the elderly, the sick, those in mourning, and any other person who would come to us for help.
- We depend on the funding of big corporations to help us provide the resources to those who rely on us for daily living, and to maintain the organization active to continue serving others.
- Local and international communities who wish to help ACHC can do so by attending and participating in our cultural events, donating their unwanted clothes, taking on a child during our Christmas campaign, or by making a donation to the organization. Performance groups who wish to help can work with ACHC to showcase their talents during our events.
- We are always grateful to have individual volunteers come work with us throughout the year. No matter the age, ethnicity, or gender of a person, we always accept help from those willing to offer it.
Albergue de Niños “El Refugio”
Ticamaya Choloma, Honduras – Orphanage
Casa Hogar el Refugio
La Paz, Honduras – Center for rehabilitation of drugs/alcohol
Orfanato Fundación Señor San José
La Paz, Honduras – Orphanage
Centro de Ayuda del Municipio de Cane
La Paz, Honduras – Orphanage
Centro de Ayuda Jehova Sama
Tegucigalpa, Honduras – Orphanage & Family Assistance Center
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