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On making a simple vendors map for a Oaxaca, Mexico NGO

Forgive the mini self-pat-on-back post but wanted to share a cool mini project I did. While in Oaxaca, I got to know an organization called En Amor a La Tierra which helps promote, connect, strengthen small businesses focused on sustainable products. Their founder Alonso Islas worked at my coworking space and his team put on a really cool fair at the coworking space where the different entrepreneurs could showcase their products. It was just cool to see products like compostable cutlery made from Avocado pits, local Oaxaca coffee growers, and solar ovens. It's simply exciting to see grassroots work being done to make things more healthy for both people and the environment in Mexico.

So this fair happened and it made me really curious as to where I could find these products otherwise. Alonso had a really basic list but I really thought a map would serve well for this. I offered to make a map (for free) for Alonso's team and set up Google Sheets as the data source (so they could easily update it without me).

The code mostly came from other side projects so it really wasn't more than 1-2 hours of work. When Alonso finally loaded all the data in, it finally felt more real/fun/interesting to see actual photos of the organizations and see where they were dispersed around Oaxaca.

It's satisfying to have skills that can be useful and find people who can use them. Of course getting paid is great too but it's also just satisfying to be helpful for free. Makes all the lonely web development learning feel more worth it.

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