Mayan Families

Curtis and I got involved with a wonderful organization last year called Mayan Families. Mayan Families is a small non-profit group operating in the Highlands of Guatemala. They live and work in the Lake Atitlan region. They operate a variety of programs as a comprehensive approach to give a hand up to needy Maya people and the communities in which they live. The work of Mayan Families is supported completely through donations.
We sponsor a little girl named Irma Isabel. Our monthly donation of just $12.90 allows her to attend school, have shoes, and school supplies. We got an update about her today with pictures and I wanted to share. It’s so easy to make a difference in the world. We were inspired by Nikki Cochrane, a remarkable young woman (she’s only 19!) who has dedicated herself to humanitarian work. I encourage you to read her blog and get involved!
Irma is 9yrs old. She is in 2nd grade. She lives in a small village called El Barranco. It is an agricultural area. She has one sister – Alicia (student #777) who is 10 years old. She is in 3rd grade. They live with their grandfather, Dolores, 75 years old, and their grandmother, Lorenza, 65 years old. Their mother abandoned them four years ago when she left to marry another man. They have not seen her since then. She has since had other children with her new husband.
Their father left home when they were very little, he went to live with another woman and he has never been financially responsible for them. The grandmother works at home looking after the children. The grandfather works in the fields looking after his cows. He has baby cows that he breeds and then sells. He earns an average of $21 per week when he sells his cows but he only sells them once a year. The rest of the year when they do not have sales and do not have much money to eat, their adult children help them with food but their adult children also have families and are very poor so cannot afford to give them very much.
They live in their own home. The house is made of mud brick, the roof is tin sheeting and the floor is cement. They have four rooms and one outside kitchen. They have a wood burning stove. They do not have an onil stove. They do not have a water filter. They have a pila (which is a 2-sided sink that is a necessity in every family). They have water connected and pay $4 U.S. per month. They have electricity connected and pay $12 U.S. per month. They have one small closet for the childrens’ clothes. They have two beds. They have a table and chairs. They do not have enough blankets.

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