Tag Archives: Guatemala

Apr 8 2013

A place to call home

By Amanda Burian, CFCA communications project manager

CFCA sponsored friends and family members in Guatemala.

From left: Rigoberto, Natali, Darvin, Dayana, Audelina and Rebeca in front of their new home. Natali and Dayana are sponsored by Ken and Linda Vilag.

Not long ago, owning a home that was safe and comfortable seemed like an unattainable dream for Rigoberto and Audelina, the parents of four young children in Guatemala.

“[Owning a home] might have been in my dreams, but it was never considered a reality,” Rigoberto said.

In February, the family received the keys to their very own home. Their dreams were made possible through the support of Ken and Linda Vilag, who sponsor two of their girls: Helen, who goes by her middle name, Dayana; and Natali.

Audelina and her children in their old one-room home.

Audelina and her children in their former one-room home.

Before receiving support through sponsorship, the family faced many hardships and daily life was a struggle.

They lived on the property of Audelina’s brother and didn’t have much to call their own.

“We only had one room built with tin sheets,” Rigoberto said. “We were all piled up in that room. There was no space for our things, and it was chaotic at times. Read more

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Apr 3 2013

Helping families achieve self-sufficiency, part 3: Guatemala

CFCA sponsored friend

Floridalma and her daughters, Bridia (left), sponsored through CFCA, and Lilian (right).

By Kristin Littrell, CFCA correspondent

CFCA is not a one-size-fits-all organization. We rely on our field staffs to know the families in each community, to listen to their needs and hopes, and to provide a program that empowers them to build a path out of poverty.

In the final post in this three-part blog series, we give you a window into several CFCA communities, to gauge the success of the Hope for a Family sponsorship program.

It takes 20 minutes on the back of a motorcycle, up steep and narrow dirt roads, to get to Floridalma’s home.

She lives in Chuixilon, a small Guatemalan village, where rolling fields of strawberries are sheltered by the peaks of nearby mountains. It is beautiful and remote. The air smells like strawberries mixed with fresh pine, and only the moon and the stars light the streets at night. Read more

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Mar 27 2013

Colorful celebrations mark Holy Week in Guatemala

In the Latin American projects we serve, Holy Week is a time for family, reflection, cultural traditions and ceremonies remembering the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Luis Cocon, CFCA communications liaison for Guatemala, sends us pictures and an account of Holy Week as it’s happening right now in Guatemala.

Please note: Our Kansas City office will be closed March 28 and 29 for Holy Thursday and Good Friday.

A mystical feeling is in the air as Holy Week processions begin in the Guatemalan city of Antigua, set against a backdrop of colonial architecture, cobblestone streets and volcanoes.

Holy Week parades in Antigua, Guatemala

Decorations and elaborate handicrafts adorn wooden platforms on which religious images are carried.

Holy Week procession symbols in Guatemala
Read more

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Mar 7 2013

Recycling plastic bottles to make furniture in Guatemala

At first glance, this may look like an ordinary loveseat in a CFCA office in Guatemala:

recycled sofa

But as is so often the case in CFCA, great stories abound where you least expect them. Peel back the cover and you get this:

recycled sofa

That’s right, a loveseat made from recycled plastic bottles ó a true labor of love from CFCA scholars in Guatemala!

We’ve blogged before about how CFCA scholars perform community service as part of their scholarship requirements. CFCA scholars in Guatemala perform 30 to 40 hours of community service each month.

One enterprising group of students decided to make these eco-friendly furniture pieces as their community service contribution:

recycled furniture

“The scholars who made this furniture show us that recycling can be a lot more interesting than stuffing paper, cans, cardboard and bottles into the proper containers,” said Luis CocÛn, CFCA communications liaison for Guatemala.

“A couch made from recycled plastic bottles may not be something we are used to, but I was pleasantly surprised with the comfort I experienced while taking a seat in one of them.”

What are some ways in which you find new ways to renovate used or recyclable items?

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