Hope Guatemala is a small Irish registered charity that has been active at a grassroots level in Guatemala. The organisation is comprised of volunteers only, with no management or administration costs. Activities are funded solely through the efforts of volunteers and there is no International Organisation or Government funding involved.
Mary Kiernan and Seamus O’Hara, along with their 3 children from Camp, Co. Kerry lived and worked in Guatemala for 18 months. They supported the local NGO (Non Government Organisation) 'SEFCA' in its efforts to improve the situation of the impoverished indigenous population, the Mayas. Their reports and experiences became the impetus to establish a Charity in 2005. Under the banner 'HOPE GUATEMALA' we began to raise money for urgently needed basic tools and seeds for a Cooperative in Santiago, Sac. The situation in Guatemala deteriorated dramatically in October 2005. Hurricane Stan devastated parts of the country, killed hundreds and made thousands homeless. Farms and villages were wiped out by landslides. People were threatened by starvation. We extended our support and established with friends a sister charity 'Nuevo Dia' in Germany.
THE DESTRUCTION CAUSED BY THE LANDSLIDE
|Committee & Founders|
A RAVINE CUT BY THE LANDSLIDE
Jointly we succeeded in raising sufficient money to deliver food to 500 people for some months, to buy seeds and animals, to rebuild a farm and to help construct 17 houses in the department of San Marcos (near the Mexican boarder).
However we soon recognized that our means and voluntary engagement were limited - that we could not help everywhere in the country. For this reason we decided in 2007 to concentrate our efforts, to help form a hopeful future for one community, the Village of Raxnam, Alta Verapaz.
"Help them to help themselves"