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. 

Las Malvinas II is a community in Villa Mella, the northern District of the Capital of the Dom. Rep.

Las Malvinas II is a community in Villa Mella, the northern District of the Capital of the Dom. Rep.

The community, started in 2001,  is tucked between a river, a park and an industrial zone.

The community, started in 2001,  is tucked between a river, a park and an industrial zone.

Most families rely on sporadic, underpaid work to get by.

Most families rely on sporadic, underpaid work to get by.

Kids fill the streets in the evenings to play baseball with broomsticks and bottle caps.

Kids fill the streets in the evenings to play baseball with broomsticks and bottle caps.


Our story: Las Malvinas & Upward Ventures

Kevin's first visits in 2008

Kevin's first visits in 2008

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.

The first trip of our founding group in 2013

The first trip of our founding group in 2013

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.