Dear Friends of W/NP, 

In thinking how to share some very difficult news, I was reminded of this email below that was sent out July 21, 2009.  In looking it over, you will see how Lynda Pracht took the Learning Center Program to the next level, she touched the hearts and lives of Nicaraguan women though her development of the "Chica Nica" doll dress project.  The magnitude of her influence is hard to fully comprehend.  Lynda coordinated the recording and gathering of over 2,000 sewing machines sent from Wisconsin to Nicaragua, she sold 478 dresses in 2012 alone, and her dedication is overwhelming when looking at her  Lynda's 2012 Chica Nica Display Schedule

Simply a stellar example of how one person's passion and dedication can make extraordinary things happen. 

Lynda passed away this morning, and our deepest thoughts and prayers go out to her family. Funeral arrangements are pending and will be available soon.   She will be dearly missed by many,  Amy 


Join Us
in sending best wishes to a simply outstanding W/NP Volunteer! 
 
A few years ago, Lynda Pracht was honored by Partners of the Americas at the International Convention and was awarded Volunteer of the Hemisphere....read on & you'll see why.  
 Lynda 1 Lynda and Nancy  Lynda 2
Happy Birthday to you
Feliz Cumpleaños a tí
 
A little history....
 
Lynda Pracht traveled to Nicaragua in 1998 on a W/NP sponsored Sewing Center Tour.  The excellent embroidery and design skills she saw, the enthusiasm of the Nic women, their spirit and their strong desire to become self sufficient, inspired her to find a niche market in the dolls dress trade.  Women from the Sewing/Learning Centers are sewing beautiful dresses, designed to fit 18" dolls - now known as Chica Nica Doll Dresses!  The dresses pass a rigid quality control review.  The Nic women are paid for their work before the dress leaves Nicaragua.  Purchase of these lovely dresses provide income to the home, often the only money coming into the household to support the family.  Women can stay in their community, earn income, learn a skill and live with dignity.
  Pattern workshop
Thanks to Lynda's efforts, since 2001 over 6,000 Chica Nica Doll dresses have been sold - Lynda is simply an amazing dynamo and is an example to us all on the power of one!
 
group photo  
 
 
Sample of far reaching effects....
 
From: Bowen, Sherin
Sent: Thursday, August 14, 2008 3:48 PM
To: Wiza, Amy; Bowen, Bob; Lucy Harvey
Subject: small world
 
I had a nice experience today.    I was walking past my neighbor's cabin here at Lake Esadore and she called me in to share an exciting new activity she had heard about.    She had a Chica Nica brochure and was going to tell me all about this wonderful project in Nicaragua.  
 
After I explained that I was familiar with it and we had a few laughs as I explained how the project started and all about the Lynda she was talking about, she said that their pastor was on sabattical and they had an interim pastor, Terrance Stratton, who we know as the WI National Guard chaplin who had been in Nicaragua with Patrick Gallagher and lives in northwest WI.   Terry had been in touch with Lynda who lent him 7 dolls and 20 doll dresses and  he shared the story with Edith's Lutheran  church women's group in Menominee.   The women were thrilled with the program and excited about the project.    Small world!!!      I am recruiting Edith and her husband for the LC Tour.    
 
Thanks Lynda for all your work.   On those days when you wonder if it is worth all the work, yes, yes, yes.       Sherin
 

hands sewing
 
chica nica sewerTo learn more about the far reaching effects of Lynda's Chica Nica project, meet the sewers, and see the wide array of beautiful dresses...click the link below on Chica Nica: 
CHICA NICA WEBSITE

 
 
 
 
Another more recent sample...from this week!!  
 
From: mildred lamprecht
Sent: Friday, July 17, 2009 8:03 PM
To: Wiza, Amy
Subject: RE: Thank you from W/NP
 
Dear Amy,

For several years now, maybe about ten, I have been increasingly amazed at what the W/NP has been doing in Nicargua.  I attended my first National Volunteer Outreach Network meeting in Springfield, Illinois.  This lady was there selling beautiful doll dresses!  We talked!  Can anyone who has talked to Lynda Pracht not catch some of her enthusiasm?  I brought dresses I believe and then ordered ten more.  During the next three years while I was Fourth/Fifth District Director of Illinois for Association of Home and Community Education I carried the dresses around through the middle counties of Illinois.  I always included information about your organization hoping to encourage more people to join your effort. 
Through the following years I have enjoyed a friendship with Lynda. 
 
Several years ago I encouraged the three counties of Peoria, Tazewell and Woodford to come together and bring supplies for Lynda who was the speaker at this meeting.  We filled Lynda's car to the roof with only a little room for her to sit in and drive home. She had her dresses and items at the NVON Conference which met again in Illinois at the Our Lady of Snow Shrine in Bellevue.  We were happy to enlarge the space for the items from Niagara.  I hope her sales were great!  (...YES THEY WERE - SHE SOLD 32 DRESSES JULY 13 - 15 LAST WEEK!!!!)

The work of W/NP, helping women to improve their monetary skills to provide for their families, fits closely with the aims of the units which make up the Illinois Association of Home and Community Education.  I carry your Newsletter with me to my unit letting them know what you are doing.  Hopefully we will be able to aid your and Lynda's efforts in the future.                    Sincerely, Mildred Lamprecht 
girls sewing  woman and daughter   girls sewing
 
Lynda,
W/NP and the women of Nicaragua thank you for taking this where we never imagined it could go! 
 
"Many have good intentions but few ever really take advantage of the opportunities that are given" 
 
 for more information on Chica Nica and/or how you can join in the Learning Center Projects and make a difference - opportunities are endless!!