Project Description

Hug It Forward

Hug It Forward celebrates the idea of giving out pure love, without expecting anything in return. A 501(c)(3) nonprofit, Hug It Forward empowers rural communities in Guatemala to build “Bottle Schools”, schools built using plastic soda bottles and other inorganic trash.

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Funds Raised
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Funding Goal
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Lives Impacted

Hug it Forward visualizes a world in which all children have the opportunity to get an education and create a better life for themselves and their families, in a community where people do not mindlessly throw things away.

In our collaborative work together, each organization leverages its strengths to ensure that Guatemala’s education system improves through the construction of 2- and 3-classroom schools. Hug It Forward’s in-country infrastructure serves as the foundation to our project’s success. Hug It Forward identifies the Guatemalan communities that are in need of a Bottle School and Advance Guatemala helps by raising the funds to build the Bottle School.

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Innovation That Creates Change

Our modern consumer culture generates billions of tons of inorganic trash every year, much of which is plastic based. Many communities do not have the adequate means to properly treat non-biodegradable trash, so it often ends up being burned or ends up contaminating our urban and rural environments.

Bottle classroom projects provide an efficient solution to these two global problems as well as many other benefits.

Access To Education

Increasing access to education in rural and indigenous communities is a positive step toward tackling other complex issues such as poverty, because an educated populace will be more likely to be resilient in the face of future development obstacles.

Bottle classroom projects provide a safe, clean, and comfortable educational atmosphere where children will be able to learn and grow for generations to come.

Raise Environmental Consiousness

Every bottle classroom construction is accompanied by our environmental education program that teaches the community about the long-lasting negative impacts that trash can have on the environment, as well as local solutions to such obstacles. The creation of the bottle classroom projects’ eco-bricks is an example of putting what is learned about repurposing inorganic waste into practice.

Youth Empowerment

The end result of a bottle classroom project is predictable: new classrooms. However, the lessons learned throughout the Hug It Forward project process are invaluable and unpredictable in breadth and depth for the children who support each project. With more than 40% of Guatemala’s population below the age of 14, bottle classroom projects provide this demographic within the communities where we build the opportunity to actively take part in creating real, tangible local change. We believe that investing in the youth’s capacity to find local solutions to local problems can bring about massive change.

The Ripple Effect

Each Hug It Forward project is an investment in the local community’s intangible sense of resiliency and self-empowerment that will continue to positively influence and inspire future project proposals. Many communities we have collaborated with to execute bottle classroom projects have gone on to solicit and receive funding for future community-wide projects. Each bottle classroom project inauguration is a step towards fostering communities with an increased access to education and environmental consciousness whose long term benefits are limitless.

Success Stories