EPIC seeks a "greater understanding of the problems facing the world community today and of the need to respond to these problems on the part of people of all faiths and to participate, where appropriate, in projects designed to meet these needs, especially in the areas of sustainable agriculture, environmental protection, human rights and promoting peace and justice." Bylaws Article I(2) (August 12, 2017).
EPIC (Ecumenical Project for International Cooperation) was founded over 40 years ago by a Catholic priest. EPIC is interfaith and works with individuals and grassroots organizations who are implementing creative solutions to urgent problems. EPIC 's structure is streamlined and efficient, with no physical location, working out of the home of the Executive Director to interface with funders in North America in support of projects in other countries that help transform peoples' lives.
Salvador, FUNDAMARCOS Educator, Guatemala, August 2018: "I use to cut trees on my land also, before I learned their value. I would clear one area and farm it, then move to another area and cut the trees there. Now I realize the value of trees to protect the ground, and to provide shade, and I integrate trees in my land and farming. It helps when I can show by example when we explain the value of trees. Then people are willing to work to plant seeds, and care for them in a nursery. And when you've done that, you will give more effort to plant properly so the trees survive. They become like a child that you care for!"
Marcela, Guatemala, August 2018: "This land was eroded, and nothing would grow. If we tried to plant seeds, the rains would wash them away, so it seemed futile. Two years ago I started learning about contour barriers, and how to protect the soil. And now you see the vegetables, and strawberries, and so much more that is growing where there use to be nothing! We also tried to grow coffee, but learned that we are too high and it gets too cold. Because we try new ideas in small ways, it was a success to learn before investing much in coffee!"
Armando, FUNDAMARCOS Coordinator, Guatemala, August 2018: "When we surveyed families in the new area, we were surprised to learn that their corn and bean harvests only lasted a few months before they were forced to buy these staples. They paid for it by leaving the community to work in the coffee or sugar cane harvest. With new techniques they will be able to improve their corn and bean harvests and integrate other crops as well. That is what gives me hope for our country, to help people learn to thrive rather than leave!"
Alex, Honduras, May 2018: "Our family use to migrate to other parts of the country to harvest coffee or sugar cane for others. When I learned to make contour barriers, and to use organic fertilizer, and to plant fast-growing trees to provide shade, I realized that I could grow enough coffee on our own land to sell. This field was abandoned. Now, not only do we not have to leave, but this past harvest we hired 20 people from our own community for four months of coffee harvest!"