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MADRE Mothers: Larissa, Nicarargua

In honor of Mother’s Day, “MADRE Mothers” is a series featuring some of the amazing women who make our work possible.

Larissa and Vivian Rose in 2007 and 2013
[L to R] Larissa and Vivian Rose in 2007 and 2013. Look how much Vivian Rose has grown!

Vivian Rose has breathed activism in the air around her since the day she was born.

As a MADRE supporter, you may have seen the first photo above on our website or in our newsletter. It was taken back in 2007, capturing a beautiful moment. You see a curious Vivian Rose watching the camera and her smiling mother, Larissa. But you may not know the story behind it. You may not know all that women and girls like Larissa and Vivian Rose have made possible since that day.

MADRE has partnered with Indigenous women on Nicaragua’s North Atlantic coast for decades. Together with our sister organization, Wangki Tangni, we provide seeds to women farmers. We dig wells and bring clean water to communities.

Back in 2007, Larissa brought her infant daughter to a MADRE training on farming and human rights. In the years since, Larissa has grown as a leader in Wangki Tangni. She coordinates activities for youth in the community, teaching them about their Indigenous culture.

In honor of Mother’s Day, “MADRE Mothers” is a series featuring some of the amazing women who make our work possible.

Just a few months ago, we had the chance to catch up with Larissa and Vivian Rose again. MADRE staff traveled to Nicaragua for a forum held every year since 2008 for Indigenous women community organizers. Larissa and other women came together to address the biggest threats they and their daughters face. They were determined to create solutions to combat poverty and protect their daughters from violence.

When we work beside our partners for the long-haul, we can help sustain their innovative solutions. And we can watch vibrant girls like Vivian Rose grow up into powerful women leaders.

Vivian Rose is the namesake of two extraordinary women leaders. Vivian Stromberg is MADRE’s co-founder and senior advisor. Rose Cunningham is a longtime MADRE partner and leader of Wangki Tangni. We won’t be at all surprised if Vivian Rose continues their legacy of activism.