Meet Diego


Diego looks like your typical young boy.

Diego is 11 years old and he needs your help!

You’d never know that he recently fled a dangerous political uprising that threatened his life.

Now his family struggles to put food on the table for Diego and his two small brothers.

I had the opportunity to meet Diego on a recent trip to Oaxaca, Mexico and life is really hard for them! 

Diego hopes you will help. Will you, please?

Diego left behind his indigenous and rural roots, trading them for a safer, but deserted place outside of Oaxaca City in the El Paraiso community.  Paraiso means “paradise” in English. Because it lines the city dump, rent is inexpensive and the poorest comb the dump for their livelihood.

This is Diego’s new home.

Even here, they are among the poorest! The family is often left without money for essentials like food even with their dad’s paycheck and mom’s faithful efforts combing the dump for recyclables. As a result, the boys don’t eat much:  coffee and bread in the morning, and on good days, the money stretches for dinner.

They need your help!

Diego’s dad is determined to build his family a home in El Paraiso. This would replace their makeshift home constructed of recycled materials. Could such a thing even be possible for Diego and his family?

Diego and his brothers at their job site

The school year had already begun, so Diego’s dad had his sons work alongside him at his new job as an abañil assistant (concrete block homebuilder). He didn’t have the money for school uniforms, supplies, or lunches anyway. Diego feared this was the  end of his schooling.

Then, one day at work they met a kind man named Bonifacio who works with the local schools.  He encouraged them to consider attending. After some convincing, Diego’s dad hesitantly enrolled his boys at Primaria Porfirio Diaz, a school you’ve been supporting for the past few years!

Every day Diego struggles to stay awake in class. It doesn’t help that he has no desk or chair to sit in unless another student is absent. Diego knows that an education will change his life forever.

His grumbly stomach is a constant reminder of this as he helps his father make concrete posts after school. As he works, Diego wonders if there will be dinner tonight. With your help, Diego can feel secure and hopeful again.

The Oaxaca Kids Can breakfast program at Diego’s school

The school’s Oaxaca Kids Can breakfast program is what keeps Diego going day after day, but unfortunately the teachers can’t keep up with the demand. Primaria Porfirio Diaz has been flooded with many others like Diego in search of a safe and secure life. That’s why Diego desperately needs your help today.

Your gift of $30 will provide Diego with the healthy breakfast and support he needs to pursue his education for an entire month!  This same support will be extended to nearly 140 of Diego’s classmates at Primaria Porfirio Diaz for an entire year with $50,000 raised by December 31st!

Despite numerous setbacks, Diego remains optimistic and gives his best effort even when it feels impossible. Your gift of $30 will give Diego the help he needs for  one month. Hunger and discouragement return. You can multiply your impact by supporting Diego and his fellow students.

This is your personal invitation to be part of Diego’s transformation story. It’s not  too late. How will you take part?


For the Kids,

John Kerr

Founder & Friend of the Kids

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This is Blanca and this summer she completed her bachelor’s degree in nursing.  Your generous support made this possible!  Blanca is finishing her nursing residency and looks forward to a future working in pediatrics.  This is the power of an education!  She wrote a letter to express her gratitude; here is an excerpt: “I am grateful to greet you in this way, and at the same time, convey my gratitude for all you have done for me and for other students.  Thank you for the kindness you have shown toward young people…”






Upcoming Trip!


Click the link below to download our Team Application:

Friends of Pimpollo Team Application


Tamale Trot Benefit Run!

Click the link below to download our printable registration form:

Tamale Trot Registration Form pdf

Tamale Trot large file



Thank you to our generous event sponsors!

Screen Shot 2017-06-12 at 11.16.39 AMWe had a blast sharing our Cinco de Mayo Celebrations with YOU last month! Over 300 of       our friends gathered with us at our Salem luncheon and Portland Happy Hour to celebrate the inspiring     work of Friends of Pimpollo. We hope you left these events feeling FULL… both from the delicious food     and the touching stories!

Here’s some good news to report…
These events raised nearly $59,000 for our programs! YAHOO! These funds are so incredibly important to the work we do. While this is a big number, we are still a little shy of our fiscal year-end goal. Little by little, we are closing in on that gap. It’s never too late to make a donation!.

Plain and simple…You are the reason we can continue our work in Southern Mexico. From the bottom of our hearts, THANK YOU!

There are so many people to thank! Because of generous event sponsors, our guests are able to  attend at no cost. This means every dollar raised goes straight to serving those in our programs.

At the Partner level, we’d like to thank Fischer, Hayes, Joye & Allen, LLC and VIP’S Inc. This was a landmark year having leading sponsors at this level!


At the Builder level, we’d like to thank Landmark Professional Mortgage Company, Coldwell Banker Commercial, Sandy Melhorn CPA, and Spring Valley Dairy, Inc.

At the Friend level, we’d like to thank Advanced Economic Solutions.

And finally, we’d like to thank our In-Kind donors, Allied Video, Berkshire Hathaway, Don Poncho, Business Printing, and Wavelength Studios.

We are so fortunate to have such a long list of supporters! Together we are changing lives forever through the gift of education. Kids will flourish!

Help Them Flourish In 2017


A Bridge To Opportunity Video

Have you seen our new video yet?! We’re really excited about it! Thank you to our wonderful team members who shared their experiences with us for this project. It was fun working with you!

Would you like to join an upcoming team? Our next scheduled, open team will be from March 24th-April 2nd, 2017. Board Member and Team Leader Cecelia Monto will be having an info session about the trip on June 6, 2016 at 5:00 pm in Building 5 Room 250 at the main Chemeketa Community College campus.

Thank You to Our Generous Event Sponsors!


2016 Program Sponsors

We are so grateful to all our event sponsors for our upcoming Cinco de Mayo Celebrations! A huge thank you to Advanced Economic Solutions, Coldwell Banker Commercial, Landmark Professional Mortgage Company, Martinez Contracting Inc., Sandy Melhorn CPA PC, and VIPs Inc.

It’s Coming! Save the Date for Cinco de Mayo 2016

Cinco de Mayo Salem 2016 Invitation

Seeking Additional Team Members!

We’re looking for two more people to join the Spring 2016 Chemeketa Community College Team to Oaxaca, which will be led by Friends of Pimpollo Board Member Cecelia Monto. The group will travel to Oaxaca from June 10-19, 2016. Says Monto about the class, “Students participate in a class on campus that meets only six times, and then the bulk of the class takes place with the project in Oaxaca. We will have guest lectures from the field and a trip to Medical Teams International, so it’s a truly interesting class. Plus it gives four transferrable credits in HUM 120, which is part of the requirements for the AAOT (the two year transfer degree in Oregon).” 

The deadline to apply has been extended to March 14th. Sign up today! Learn more by visiting the Chemeketa Study Abroad website. An informational brochure about the course can be found here and the application can be found here.

CCC June 2015 Team