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Dear Members and Friends of El Charco del Ingenio

On behalf of our nonprofit’s board of directors, this letter is to request your financial support for the renewal of the Botanical Garden’s reception area. New infrastructure is required after 26 years of continuous operation. Such an endeavor requires an investment exceeding our ordinary income, so we are reaching out in order to complete this significant project.

El Charco is a community effort that has brought together people of differing interests, knowledge, visions, and resources since its inception in 1991. It is the result of growing awareness of the importance this magnificent site has for San Miguel de Allende as a nature preserve and mainly as an educational center.

The area currently includes a gift shop, cafeteria, bathrooms, and an outside patio. This 20- year-old structure is insufficient and unable to fully carry out our educational mission. We aim to rebuild the area, not only upgrading existing services, but also creating new facilities for the public and staff. Besides a more functional gift shop, an upper mirador, and extended bathrooms, a new information and interpretative center will be built. This new pavilion will offer information to everybody so they can have a clear understanding about El Charco and the geographical, ecological, and cultural contexts, thus creating respect and appreciation of the environment and nature for current and future generations.

A team of talented architects and designers is in charge of the new design. Municipal permitting is currently in process, and we aim to start construction in the next months. The work will be done in a way that does not obstruct access to the Garden, allowing the gift shop and cafeteria to carry on their services.

The approximate budget for this project will be 5,000,000 pesos (about US$280,000). Broad economic participation is necessary to achieve our goal. So we ask you, the community of members, friends, and lovers of El Charco, for generous financial aid to complete the project. We are pleased to announce that several benefactors have established a matching fund. Contributions from individuals of US$150 or greater made during 2018 will double in value in our new visitor center’s fundraising! US tax-deductible contributions can be made through the SMCF (sanmiguelcommunityfoundation.org) by making the notation “for El Charco del Ingenio visitor center.” We are planning to have a wall in the new garden’s entrance recognizing those organizations and individuals making larger contributions.

I would be glad to personally share more information, including blueprints and renders for this project. We will also hold several briefings, and we will be making progress reports regularly through our monthly newsletter and subsequent communications.

We are convinced this is a wise investment for the future of El Charco and San Miguel, as well as the nation.

 

Sincerely,

Cesar Arias de la Canal, President of the Board of Directors

 

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