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Lake Chapala´s Charitable Youth Organization

Have Hammer…Will Travel is a Mexican charity that teaches valuable life skills to Mexican youth and adults through woodworking and carpentry.  Located on the shores of Lake Chapala, in Riberas del Pilar, Jalisco, Mexico.  Have Hammer exists because of community donations and committed volunteers.


more about us

Our Programs

In Level I, they are boys and girls from area schools who come from low income families. In Level II (and eventually Level III), they are youth and adults from across the north shore who wish to explore and possibly train for a woodworking career. Some of these students attend school, some work part-time, and some are mothers or fathers.

Our Mission

Have Hammer...Will Travel is a Mexican charity association located in Riberas del Pilar, along the north shore of Lake Chapala, Jalisco, Mexico. The mission of HHWT is to provide learning and social experiences within a safe, supportive environment in order to enhance the economic potential of families in the Lake Chapala communities.

Whether you contribute financially or as an advocate for good, you make a real difference.

HHWT serves as a resource for any citizen who seeks to explore, develop, or enhance one´s career and technical skills and experiences..  These learning opportunities provide a critical choice especially for youth who have few other positive options; 65% of youth in Mexico do not continue schooling after 9th grade for a variety of reasons.  Only 36% of Mexicans have earned the equivalent of a high school degree (OECD, reported in New York Times, 19 November, 2013)
Each year, approximately 30 male and female students attend either Level I classes (ages 10-14) or Level II classes (ages 15 and above).  They come from all the villages in the municipality of Chapala, where the majority have low economic status.
Our motto

Hope is everything

Your generosity makes our work possible. Whether you contribute financially or as an advocate for good, you make a real and lasting difference in people’s lives.

get involved

Your help is needed to maintain this valuable Program. By making a $ donation (link below), by donating machines or tools, and/or by volunteering, you, too can ensure that this valuable program continues in place.

Make a donation

Your generosity makes our work possible. Whether you contribute financially or as advocate for good.

Legacy donation

Through contributions to Have Hammer Will Travel’s work with Mexican adults and youth you have the ability to change not only the life of the program participant, but many generations after that will benefit from the gift of the valuable trade skills they will learn.

Join our Efforts

Most people can say that they made a difference in someone’s life but not many people can say that they permanently changed the course of someone’s life for the better.

Kids Projects

Our latest activity

Each year, Have Hammer…Will Travel hosts an Open House (in summer) and a
dinner/dance fundraiser (February). Both events help inform the Lakeside community
about the program and solicit varied forms of donations, such as silent auctions, gross
receipts from ticket sales, and bar sales.

In addition, the Have Hammer Gourmet Club arranges a catered dinner about once a year as a way to galvanize more financial support for and awareness of the program.