Hope against all odds
Las Malvinas is a community of 450+ families in the capital of the Dominican Republic. Despite most families being extremely poor, with high levels of illiteracy and underemployment, we see the human potential. It’s a tight knit community; organized, and always welcoming. Their poverty comes from lack of opportunity: what people in Las Malvinas need urgently are good jobs that will provide a steady income and the chance to invest in their kids.
Our story: Las Malvinas & Upward Ventures
In 2008 our founder, Kevin Moforte, came in contact with the community of Las Malvinas while working for TECHO, a nonprofit that works in extremely poor settlements. Through TECHO, his team started transitional housing and urban gardening programs for families struggling with dire living conditions. Other projects included basic infrastructure: the local school was improved & a clandestine dump was converted into a park that now is enjoyed by all in the community and visitors.
A few years later living in the US, Kevin attended MercyHouse, a local church, and visited Las Malvinas with a team looking for ways to support the community. This trip turned into several more, where college students and church members worked with the community building a water cistern, planting trees and giving training.
After 2 years and in an effort to make a stronger, lasting impact, the founding group sought a permanent presence in the Dominican Republic and launched Upward Ventures.