Our work in Guatemala is primarily focused on increasing access to education.
Our early efforts focused on our school in Rió Hermi outside of Barillas. Our students come from a variety of villages between the city of Santa Cruz Barilles and the Mexican border, within the Department of Huehuetenango. This is an area of extreme poverty, where electricity is uncommon, and corn is the staple food. Many live and work day-to-day to feed their families. The common language spoken is the Mayan language of Q'anjob'al.
More recent efforts have included cooperative projects with volunteer fire departments in Antigua and Santa Maria de Jesus. Projects include trauma training to improve knowledge and awareness of mental health and strategies for dealing with children and families in distress. Additional projects with short term medical teams work with the local fire departments to provide medical care to the local population where access to medical care can be scarce.
The beauty of the region is undeniable, yet so is the lack of resources and opportunity. We rely on your partnership to make these projects a reality.
VOLCÁN DE FUEGO UPDATE:
On Sunday June 3th, 2018 Volcán de Fuego erupted with force, leaving several communities buried in ash and many surrounding communities lacking in resources.
Linda Sheppard with The Chance to Dream arrived shortly thereafter to support the volunteer firemen and women from Antigua in their efforts to search and rescue, as well as to distribute needed supplies. Additional medical personell arrived to provide support and access to needed medical attention.
Long term effects of this eruption have yet to be seen, but many communities have been displaced and others have had crops devistated. We will be looking for sustainable projects to work with local populations during their time of recovery.