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Launching the Guatemalan Ambassadors Program

In the Guatemalan Volunteer program it is always a challenge to get more people to join the team. The volunteers are incredibly valuable to us for all the love, confidence and good examples they give not only to the kids, but also to older students and families.

We already know that more people could learn about Safe Passage and contribute their time and talent to Safe Passage; the question is: how? When we ask our Guatemalan volunteers or staff how they became interested in the project, most people say, “through a friend.” So who better to get involved in the project, than all of the friends and families of our volunteers? With this idea in mind, over a year ago, we dared to dream of establishing a Guatemalan Ambassadors Program!

Mapping an Adventure

Earlier this year one of our Safe Passage support teams decided to educate the kids at Safe Passage about Deb Walters' fantastic effort to raise awareness and funds by kayaking from Maine to Guatemala. 

Mid-Maine UU Youth Support Team, was from 3 different UU (Unitarian Universalist) churches in Maine. Since Deb’s launch date was the same day as the team's arrival in Guatemala, they decided to make their project with the kids about Deb's journey. The idea was to create a map so the kids could see where she was each day and learn about the journey she is making on their behalf. The team's efforts began before they arrived in Guatemala, as Deb and the team also did a joint fundraiser in Maine to raise awareness back home.  

Then and Now: Nery

Nery is a student in our educational reinforcement center and has been studying at Safe Passage since the year 2000 when he was 5 years old. Like many of our students, most of his other family members work either in or around the dump. His older sister and brother still go down to the dump every day to recycle and his dad drives one of the 900 trucks that bring trash from all over Guatemala City. His mother Mirna however, is in our CREAMOS program, and makes enough money from her jewelry making, that she doesn’t have to go to the dump anymore.

A mile in their shoes

The mothers’ running club has been operating at Safe Passage for two years. The mothers recently decided to step up their traning schedule and are meeting on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays at 6am at the Parque de la Democracia in Guatemala City before some of them attend morning church services. Seven mothers are regular members of the group and their ages range from 23 to 60. They find that their runnig club is a great way to keep fit and socialize. Irma Corado, the Assistant Manager of the Social Entrepreneurship helps organize the club for these running moms.

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