Project – Purisil




Purisil is located midway between two popular tourist attractions – the Tapantí National Park and the Monte SKY ecological viewpoint. It is a small town that was built by approximately 60 families. Tourists, bicyclists, and buses pass through the village multiple times a day. Most of the available jobs are in the fields, planting and harvesting vegetables, such as tomatoes, cucumbers, chili and coffee. Being an area with a lot of tourism, women have jobs in cabins, and as cooks, maids, and house cleaners. Purisil is a village with a need for more sources of employment, especially for women. 


Angelica Vindas Mena lives with her husband, Rafael, and four of their six sons. Theirs is an incredibly hard-working family that suffered a difficult time when Rafael was let go from his government job without warning after 29 years. Their bakery, initially named Panaderia Quetzal after the rare Costa Rican bird, is a family venture with everyone having a part to play in the business, including baking, packaging, oven maintenance, publicity, sales, and distribution of bread. Their specialties will consist of baguettes, sweet breads, cookies, cornbread, flan, roasted chicken, pizza, pork tenderloin, tamales, and a pudding called tamal de maicena. Angelica and her family describe their products as not only homemade, but unique in their area.


Less than a month after Angelica’s oven was completed, a devastating flood destroyed the family’s home. By the grace of God, the oven remained standing without any structural damage, but it was apparent that the family would not be able to rebuild on their land due to the new path cut by the river. After many months of working with their local government officials, Angelica and her family were given financial assistance to purchase a house in the nearby town of Orosi. Bricks to Bread supporters raised close to $10,000 to aid the family and Angelica and her family members dug through the mud to recover as many of the baking supplies as they could find.

It is too soon to know whether Angelica’s oven – renamed Panaderia Milagro (Miracle Bakery) – will be moved or rebuilt, but this resilient family is always part of our Bricks to Bread family. Angelica is steadfast in her goal: I want to prepare my children for a good future that improves them. I think this is what all mothers want for their children. That’s my personal, family dream. In addition, I hope to improve the condition of other families in our community. Everything is in God’s hands. Without him we are nothing. He has this. We are not [building this bakery business] alone nor will others have to do this alone. I would also like to help others with these projects, God willing, if I am able. This is our family. This is what brings our family together. We are united and work together to help others.

Change lives by providing a sustainable source of income for families in need.

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