HELP TO COMBAT CHRONIC MALNUTRITION IN THE HIGHLANDS OF GUATEMALA
Mayan Families is a nonprofit operating in the Highlands of Guatemala, working to provide opportunities and assistance to the indigenous and impoverished people through education and community development programs.
This page is specifically devoted to the organization's Malnutrition Program. For the full range of programs run by Mayan Families please visit the website at www.mayanfamilies.org
Chronic malnutrition is the single biggest contributor to the deaths of children under 5 in Guatemala. Half of Guatemalan children under 5 suffer from chronic malnutrition. Mayan Families is a small not for profit organization operating in the highlands region of Guatemala around Lake Atitlan. The organization operates numerous nutrition focused programs (among many others) to needy infants and young children each year, as well as family nutrition education and community outreach efforts.
What is the issue, problem, or challenge?
Guatemala has the third highest rate of chronic malnutrition in the world. UNICEF estimates that 50% of Guatemalan children under 5 are chronically malnourished and in some indigenous communities this rate approaches 80% and chronic malnutrition is the biggest contributor to deaths of children under 5 in Guatemala. Malnutrition is not only a physical problem but is one of the root causes of poverty and lack of access to healthcare, clean water, sanitation and education compound this problem. Childhood malnutrition is linked to stunted growth, lower IQ (through negative effects on brain and nerve development), lower physical capacity and less energy to learn and work. The cycle continues across generations with chronically malnourished mothers giving birth to underweight babies.
How will this project solve this problem?
The program combats malnutrition in the Lake Atitlan region through education, medical care and provisional aid. Specific program initiatives include:
While the program is ongoing, it is largely unfunded for the coming year. Essential aspects of the program are at risk of closure due to its lack of funding.
How you can help