In 1968, Reverend Father Rodrigo Molina, a Spanish priest from Pravia, Asturias, responded to the dire situation among the Quechua people in Peru by heeding the urgent call from the Second Vatican Council, as well as the encyclical, Populorum Progressio of Pope Paul VI regarding poverty and human deprivation. Accordingly, Father Molina, along with a group of dedicated lay persons founded PRODESA (Promoter of Development) later named PRODEIN, (Promoter of Complete Development) for the purpose of reaching out to the most destitute in the spirit of the Gospel of our Lord.
That same year, inspired by Father Molina, José Cruz Vicente Letamendia, along with his wife, left their home in the Basque Country (Spain) and went to live in Cuzco, Peru among the poorest and most wanting of society. They labored for their love of Christ to promote complete development among the poor by starting the first technical school, PRODEIN. This school provides machine and technical skills as well as food, clothing and medicine.
This seed planted by the faithful Letamendia family encouraged many missionaries and volunteers to dedicate years of service to the most needy, along with many other welldoers, who, while not working directly with the missions, have made donations of money or goods. All these efforts have helped to develop the PRODEIN of today.
PRODEIN began by serving the most impoverished Quechua populations of the Andean Altiplano in Peru. This was accomplished by devoting attention to their material and spiritual needs. In very difficult circumstances, an environment was created to provide medical, food and educational resources, including establishing a hospital and schools.
In the United States, PRODEIN NON-PROFIT INC. was founded in New Jersey in 1984 with the objective of constructing an adequate platform for fighting what has been the plague of the world throughout human history: poverty. We do this through charitable, educational and missionary works for the benefit of the poor and needy, inspired in the everlasting values of the Gospel and summarized in the maxim “Love of God and love of thy neighbor.” This is done in a way that is in accordance with the intrinsic value of every human life: the dignity of every person without exceptions, conditions, nor limits.
We promote Complete Development through the aid that we send for the undertaking of educational and training projects, daycare centers, schools, technical schools, universities and all sorts of formal and informal education, as well as productive enterprises, which are complemented by health projects, hospitals, medical posts and pro-life action centers, and food security with a network of soup kitchens which support development actions in the places where we work. This material development of man is combined with spiritual development, which allows for growth and improvement of their social conditions with the hand and company of God.