Global Grant Program
Rotary Club of San Mateo Global Grant 
Rotary Club of San Mateo, Rotary International, Namaste Direct and the Hillsdale High School and College of San Mateo put forth an international program to supplement our students learning experience to find solutions to ending world poverty in Central America. The program has been in place for more than 10 years and has severed more than 300 students. Many graduates have pursued international studies and have formed similar clubs at their college/university campuses. 
Our Club recently has applied and been approved a global grant with Rotary International in the amount of $145,000.  Our student partners were able to contribute $60,000 out of their own fund raising efforts coupled with matching funds from Rotary International, the Rose Stone Foundation and others. We also solicited support from other Rotary Clubs from as far away as Traverse Michigan.
How It Works
Namaste our partner has formed a broad sweeping organization in Guatemala to contribute to Women’s Economic Empowerment by providing business development programs that increase the business cash flow of low-income women. A small amount of money can dramatically change a women’s life and the life of her family that empowers both our high school students and the local women community in Guatemala. 
Study Tours Available
As the World Wide Pandemic ends we plan to re-instate our annual study tour with students and Rotarians to visit these small communities and understand how educating women thru the use of mentorship programs and micro loan funding can improve the families in these small Guatemalan families. If you would like to join us, please contact us at the link below:
The San Mateo Rotary Club is the proud sponsor of a global grant to create prosperity for women living in poverty in Guatemala. In partnership with Namaste Direct and the Rotary Club of Mazatenango, this grant will economically empower a minimum of 180 female micro-entrepreneurs to  grow profitable businesses and carve pathways out of poverty. This project will also equip 40 women who demonstrate great ambition and potential for growth with a tablet and training on a business planning app. We look forward to seeing how technology enhances their growth as entrepreneurs. 
Students from our Interact Club, the Hillsdale Effect, are playing a vital role in the global grant. Students raised $22,000 toward the project which was matched by a private foundation and The Rotary Foundation - bringing their total contribution to the grant to $66,000! This project is also fostering a first-hand learning opportunity for the students to understand global cycles of poverty and effective economic development solutions. Every other month, Namaste hosts a zoom conference for the students and rotarians to review the project data and progress against goals. These sessions foster transparency and powerful insights into the lives of the beneficiaries of the grant. 
We launched the project in January 2021, and as of July 1st, 102 marginalized women from the departments of Suchitepequez and Solola have enrolled in Namaste’s Creating Prosperity Program, where they receive individualized business advising, financial education and micro-loan. As you can see from the screenshots below, beneficiaries of the grant have already seen an average profit increase of 111%! 
60% of Guatemalans live below the poverty line
50% of children suffer from chronic malnutrition
36% of migrants detained at the US border in 2019 have been Guatemala
Our Creating Prosperity model is unique in that the women in our program get far more than a loan.  Each woman in our program is matched with a local business advisor who is very familiar with the region and the challenges faced by small business owners and they work together to set goals, create a business plan, balance their finances, etc. The women in our program also attend financial literacy classes where they recieve critical, culturally appropriate training on things like how to make a budget. These classes are an opportunity for women to get to know each other and share best practices. Finally, we provide microloans that are commensurate with each client’s business plans. Creating Prosperity works in 9 month cycles. women who attend all of their business advising sessions and financial classes and repay their loans on time are invited to advance to the next cycle and as you can see from this chart, their profits continue to increase after the completion of each cycle. One of the things that makes Namaste unique is our commitment to using data to gage the success of our program.  
MHS As soon as I joined the Hillsdale Effect my freshman year, I knew this club was about more than philanthropy. It’s about humanity, education, providing equity, and effective fundraising.  went to Guatemala my freshman year. I remember walking with the Namaste advisors, Hillsdale Effect members, and the women from one woman’s house to another because it was too small for us. We sat on the dusty floor as the advisor asked the women about their sales, purchases, and whether or not they’ve been keeping track of it all. As one of the few who understands Spanish, I could tell when the women’s 
Our goal for the global grant is to raise 10,000 dollars and we challenge you to match our profits