On Tuesday, May 20th, we adventured back to Guatemala City! We met with individuals from Catholic Relief Services, a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing humanitarian assistance to alleviate poverty and bring a better standard of living to the needy. Within Guatemala, they have been working to empower communities in order to foster sustainable integral human development. We learned about some of the projects they have even doing in Guatemala: educating the youth on their human rights, supporting agricultural workers to advocate for their labor rights, assisting communities to prevent water-borne diseases, and improving access to food. They have been doing a lot of amazing things in Guatemala and it was really interesting to hear some of their challenges and success stories.
After that we went to Hospicio San Jose, a center for individuals living with HIV. We spent most of our time playing with babies - they were adorable. Most of the children there were abandoned after their parents found out they were HIV+ or child services brought them to the center. They also provide a lot of services to adults and members of the community. This was an incredibly rewarding part of our trip and everyone was really glad that we had the opportunity to go.
Today is Wednesday, the days are going by faster and faster the closer we get to the end of our trip!
The majority of us went to repair a home of two students from the school. The family used to rent land until now, which is why they live where they do. The family owns this piece of land now but there is not enough living space for all of them. So what we did today was begin the building of a second room for they two younger boys who currently go to the school we are volunteering at. One son is in second grade and the other is in kindergarten! The family was extremely appreciative of the work we did, even though we were unable to finish. People will be finishing up the house the rest of the week.
We got hit with a lot of rain today, looks like we may be catching the beginning of rainy season in Guatemala!