Happy Autumn, everyone! We have lots of news to share, so we will put out some new blogs over the next few weeks. We’ll start with some very exciting news. We have two new scholarship recipients from Guatemala: Maria and Pascuala.
To start with, we need to tell you how we met them. Our contact in Mexico, Vicki, works with an organization called IMUMI, Instituto para las Mujeres en la Migracion. IMUMI works with families displaced and separated by US immigration policy. Vicki introduced Christa to an organization here in the United States called KIND, Kids in Need of Defense (www.supportkind.org). KIND works with children in the US who need legal help due to immigration and refugee issues. They have an arm that works in Guatemala with children who have been sent home after living here. One of the NGOs in Guatemala that they work with is called Colectivo Vida Digna (Collective for a Dignified Life).
From KIND’s website: “Colectivo Vida Digna is a non-profit initiative in the western highlands region of Guatemala that provides a platform for and associates cultural actors working for the vindication of Mayan Culture.Vida Digna creates mechanisms for emerging Mayan voices on collective indigenous rights and cultural expressions.Since 2010, Vida Digna has been working together with Kids in Need of Defense as part of the Guatemalan Child Return and Reintegration Project in order to procure a safe family reunification and reintegration process for unaccompanied immigrant youth detained in the US and returning to Guatemala.This is the first bi-national project of its kind to exist between organizations in the US and Central America.”
We had several conversations over the phone with the people who run Vida Digna, and we are very happy to be able to support two young women that they nominated for scholarships. Maria and Pascuala sound like wonderful young ladies and we look forward to meeting them. Please check out their new pages on the site to get to know their stories and stay in touch with their progress. We’re very excited!
Pascuala Alicia Och Ixmata (click to enlarge)
Maria Sop Zapil (click to enlarge)
Stay tuned for more news in the coming weeks from Nicaragua, Honduras, India and Africa!