Fighting to End
Poverty in Guatemala
A predominantly poor country, Guatemala struggles in infant, child, and maternal mortality, malnutrition, and literacy.
Guatemala Poverty Facts
- Nearly half of Guatemala’s children under 5 are chronically malnourished
- More than half of the population is below the national poverty line
- 23% of the population live in extreme poverty
- The literacy rate is 80.8%
- Life expectancy is 72.91 years
- The GDP per capita is $4,363
Help for Guatemala
Food For The Poor began working in Guatemala in 1986 and today has 40 active projects providing secure homes and sustainable programs that provide a source of income and nutrition for impoverished families.
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Our Impact in Guatemala
So far in 2022, FFTP, in partnership with Caritas Arquidiocesana, has carried out three water distribution projects and reconstruction of the water system, in three departments of the Republic of Guatemala, benefiting 100 families directly and 322 families indirectly.
Repairs were completed on Los Anonos schools. Enhancements include replacing the roof and gutters, improving the water system, repairing restrooms and building a warehouse.
In partnership with Archdiocesan Caritas in the department of Guatemala and its municipalities, FFTP completed the construction of 50 homes of the 1927U Chiyani Homes project, 51 houses of the 2013U Los Prires project, 40 houses in the village of El Tablón in the municipality of Villa Nueva and added 45 kitchens to homes in Hatio and Cofradias.
Provided eight families with 3,500 tilapia fingerlings and technical advice in the ongoing Tilapia Project established in 2020 and built a commercial marketplace that included a sales room, security room, warehouse and electronic and hanging scales.
Built 557 homes for families in need of housing, bringing the total to 3,460 since inception.
Shipped 473 containers of essential items to Guatemala.
Provided 3,500 Tilapia fingerlings each in five ponds in the Tilapia Project in the Aldea del Tabacal in the municipality of El Rodeo in the department of Escuintla.
Initiated a fundraising campaign to provide lifesaving surgery for Baby Marcela of El Progreso, Guatemala. Marcela initially had the first of two surgical procedures in September 2021 at Boston Children’s Hospital to correct ectopia cordis – a rare, usually fatal disorder in which babies are born with their hearts outside their chest. She later had a second procedure in 2022.
Shipped 484 containers of essential items to Guatemala, including 95 containers of items specifically for COVID-19 relief and 55 containers of hurricane supplies in response to Hurricanes Eta and Iota.
Responded to the COVID-19 pandemic by establishing a project to provide necessary tools to training centers for women to earn an income as they produced more than 16,720 face masks.
Began the Tilapia Project in the Aldea del Tabacal in the municipality of El Rodeo in the department of Escuintla, impacting a village of 48 families.
Built 139 homes for a total of 2,903 homes since inception.
Worked with donors to assist 24 Angels Of Hope children’s homes and provide a haven for 1,555 children in need of love and care.
Provided emergency aid, including medical supplies, food and clothing, in response to the eruption of Volcan de Fuego (“Volcano of Fire”) on June 3, 2018 – the most severe in 45 years. The volcano, one of the most active in Central America, released a stream of lava, and a cloud of hot rocks and ash over nearby Guatemala City, the country’s capital, killing 194 people and leaving 260 declared missing.
Completed 45 projects in Guatemala, including seven agricultural projects, five animal husbandry, 10 community development, six education, two housing, two medical and eight water projects.
FFTP donors work through 20 Angels Of Hope children’s homes in Guatemala, providing safe housing for 1,822 orphaned or abandoned children.
Shipped 597 containers of supplies to Guatemala.
Built 350 homes for a total of 2,485 homes since inception.
Received a grant from the United States Agency for International Development’s American Schools and Hospitals Abroad program to fund renovations at the Children’s Hospital Juan Pablo II in Mixco, Guatemala. The grant covered the cost of a hospital-wide solar-powered generating system and replacement of the hospital’s 30-year-old inefficient appliances and equipment.
Shipped 463 containers of supplies to Guatemala. In addition, Gifts In Kind shipments included food, medicine, healthcare items and educational supplies.
Built 90 housing units in Guatemala for a total of 3,667 housing units since inception.
FFTP donors work through 16 Angels Of Hope orphanages in Guatemala, providing a home for 1,621 orphaned or abandoned children.
Completed numerous projects, including three housing projects, 15 community development programs, five animal husbandry projects, three water projects, three medical centers and a school, as well as five agricultural projects and eight feeding/nutritional centers.
Supported more than 250 projects that provide training programs for women to earn a living as dressmakers, bakers, handcraft designers
Completed a variety of projects, including seven community development programs, five animal husandry and five water projects. Other projects included the construction of a medical center and the completion of a sanitation station and a school project.
Built 146 housing units for a total of 3,647 homes since inception.
Sponsored 14 Angels Of Hope orphanages, providing a home for 1,177 children.
Shipped 495 containers of supplies, as well as Gifts In Kind shipments of food, medicine, health care items, and educational supplies.
Shipped 277 containers in aid, providing food, medicine, health care items, educational supplies and other necessities.
Supported 10 self-sustainable agricultural projects with radish, onions, cauliflower and cabbage and Hass avocados.
Supported more than 100 projects that provide training programs for women to earn a living as dressmakers, bakers, handcraft designers.
Sponsored eight Angels Of Hope orphanages, providing a home for 301 children.
Partnered with Hormel Foods Corporation and Caritas Arquidiocesana to help children suffering from life-threatening malnutrition. Since its inception, the partnership has provided more than 21.4 million 3-ounce cans of Spammy™, a shelf-stable turkey spread fortified with zinc, iron, B vitamins, and other essential vitamins and minerals.
Distributed two containers of more than 88,000 pounds of soybeans to make milk, protein-rich meat substitute dishes, and flour. The shipment was made possible by FFTP donors, the World Soy Foundation and member companies of the Northern Food Grade Soybean Association
Inaugurated the Vocational Center Corazón de Jesús, in Quetzaltenango, to teach residents training in sewing, embroidery, baking, tailoring, literacy and nutrition. Parishioners of St. Peter of Alcantara Catholic Church in Port Washington raised money to build the vocational center. The project also supplied the center with the equipment needed for hands-on training consisting of 10 industrial electric sewing machines, four heavy-duty clothes irons, two industrial stoves, two heavy-duty bakery mixers, and a computer.
Inaugurated a water system for 25 families who live in FFTP housing. As part of a Lenten project, parishioners from St. Matthias Catholic Church in Parma, Ohio, raised money to fund the water system.
Inaugurated a series of aquaculture projects in multiple locations across Guatemala. The multi-pond tilapia farm projects were completed jointly with the Taiwan International Cooperation and Development Fund, Lutheran Council and Caritas Arquidiocesana.
Distributed 100 metric tons of textured soy protein provided by Iowa soybean growers to 260,000 children. The distribution was made through a McGovern-Dole International Food for Education and Child Nutrition program led by FFTP.
Selected by the United States Department of Agriculture, Foreign Agriculture Service to distribute approximately 1,436 containers containing 24,600 metric tons of food and milk in Guatemala. Administered through the McGovern-Dole International Food For Education and Child Nutrition Program, the award enabled FFTP to implement a three-year school feeding program aimed at improving attendance, health, enrollment of girls, and educational achievement. The program fed 100,000 children in daycare centers, preschools and clinics and provided take-home rations for another 160,000 children, family members, teachers and caregivers.
Dedicated a village in Chiquimula, Guatemala, located approximately 175 miles northeast of Guatemala City in a region prone to severe drought. Consisting of 60 homes, latrines and a water tank, the village served 250 people whose homes were destroyed during Hurricane Mitch.
The United States Department of Agriculture selected FFTP to distribute 6,000 metric tons of food and other necessities in Guatemala, which had been ravaged by drought and other natural disasters in recent years. Valued at $4.5 million, the food was a major component in a mother/child health and education program to reduce malnutrition and improve health, literacy, school attendance and community involvement in the country’s most impoverished areas.
Sent 1,378 containers of aid consisting of food, medical supplies, educational materials and clothing to Guatemala.
Selected by the United States Department of Agriculture to distribute nonfat dry milk for feeding programs targeting children, the elderly and the impoverished. An initial shipment of 835,000 pounds of milk supplied over 2,000 schools, hospitals, churches, orphanages, clinics and feeding programs throughout the country. The grant of nearly 13 million pounds of milk was valued at more than $11 million for the first year and was renewable for two additional years.
Began working in Guatemala, subsequently providing impoverished families secure homes with sanitation, water, medical care and self-sustaining projects as a source of income and nutrition. In-country partners include Caritas Arquidiocesana and the Order of Malta.