About Shoulder to Shoulder

In 1990, Dr. Jeff Heck of the University of Cincinnati Family Medicine Department in collaboration with the people of Santa Lucia, Intibucá began providing health care services in rural Intibuca, Honduras.  This work became Shoulder to Shoulder, a private, non-profit, non-governmental organization.  In a spirit of collaboration and empowerment, Shoulder to Shoulder and local community leaders formed Hombro a Hombro, a grassroots, community-based, non-profit NGO registered in Honduras since 1998.  Shoulder to Shoulder and Hombro a Hombro work together, guided by a single vision, united in a single mission.

In its 25 years of service Shoulder to Shoulder has expanded its territory, now encompassing the municipalities of Santa Lucia, San Antonio, Magdalena, Camasca, Colomoncagua, Concepción and San Marcos de La Sierra in the southern, rural area of Intibucá, Honduras.  The international community has used the term, Dry Corridor, for this territory and a large swath of territory running from Guatemala to Nicaragua.  Frequent droughts, attributed to global climate change, have further impoverished southern Intibucá, Honduras.  Shoulder to Shoulder implements basic health care, advanced medicine, dental services, education, community health programs, and nutrition to over 69,000 rural Hondurans.  In forming an alliance with the Honduran Government though the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Education, Shoulder to Shoulder is the primary implementer of government health and education services, employing over 150 Honduran staff.  Shoulder to Shoulder’s doctors and staff living in the US are 100% volunteer.


  • We treat patients, students, and visitors with respect.
  • We provide prompt and effective treatment as appropriate.
  • We provide information to people and communities in need.
  • We are honest and transparent with patients, communities, and donors.
  • We take proper care of resources.
  • We have skills to do the work, and we train and develop people.
  • We partner effectively with governments, other NGOs, and citizen groups.
  • We strive for excellence.
  • We are results-oriented with data demonstrating reductions in poverty.
  • We are a team and show mutual respect within the organization.

Shoulder to Shoulder prohibits discrimination in employment, educational programs, and activities on the basis of race, national origin, color, creed, religion, sex, age, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or associational preference.