FIELD NOTES 

STORIES OF INSPIRATION AND EMPOWERMENT

FISHING FOR TILAPIA

Guatemala is teeming with tilapia!

A system of several ponds in Zacapa, Guatemala — the location of Casa de Esperanza — is home to one of our Impact Investing ventures in the country.

These ponds aren’t the average backyard watering hole, either. At the end of November, those in charge of the project stocked the ponds with 1,960 tilapia fingerlings. They’re hardly ready to eat at this stage, though — a tilapia fingerling weighs about one gram, and is only one inch long.

It takes an average of 34 weeks for these fingerlings to grow into food-grade tilapia, weighing between 16 and 20 ounces. That means these fish still have a few more months in the pond, even though a buyer and local distributor has already secured a deal to buy and distribute the tilapia to local restaurants. 

Until then, Jelbin and Erwin at Casa de Esperanza have the opportunity to care for the young tilapia. This is one of several benefits of Impact Investing: in addition to the revenue these harvests bring in, all of which benefits the children, adolescents have the opportunity to dip their hands into different businesses to see what area they may want to pursue in their own careers. 

Tilapia ponds at Zacapa, Guatemala
Teens in the community have the opportunity to get involved with local farming businesses

Impact Investing all a part of Horizon’s vision of self-sustainability — and it’s not limited to the fish, either! Other kids have decided to get involved with on-site vegetable harvests, growing beans, tomatoes, corn, eggplants and more. Sustainability salads, anyone?

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