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Mayan Families

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Community Improvement & Capacity Building, Emergency Assistance, Human Services, International, International Development, Personal Social Services

Mission: As an accredited 501(c)(3) non-governmental organization, Mayan Families' mission is to facilitate sustainable development programs in impoverished communities throughout the Lake Atitlán region of rural Guatemala. Our objective is to stimulate long-term progress through school sponsorships, health initiatives, vocational training and microfinance, while providing emergency aid to those in critical need. Our organization operates on the principle that all people should have access to the basic necessities of life. We strive to accomplish our goals through working democratically with the communities we serve. Sign up for Our Newsletter and see how you can support us further: http://bit.ly/1beeo1p

Results: Mayan Families has supported 3,620 students in the past 10 years through our Student Sponsorship Program from the Preschool to University levels. We operate 7 Preschools year round that feed and educate malnourished children. Currently, our Education Program has 2,554 active students.Our Trade School has trained 364 people in different disciplines: 92 sewing students, 46 carpentry students, 221 computer students and 5 welding students. We have provided 344 Microloans to help impoverished Indigenous Mayan Women. 1,364 clients and families benefited from financial and nutritional support throughout 2014-15. This year we donated 425 Stoves, which reduce air pollution and help create a safer home environment. In 2015 alone, Mayan Families gave out 455 Water Filters, giving 3,315 indigenous families gained access to clean water. We have also held over 6 years of Clinics in the poorest communities in rural Guatemala. Our medical team has seen over 2,000 patients via mobile clinics in over 10 different communities, as well as over 1,000 patients in the Charlie Gomez Medical Clinic. We have served a daily meal to 85 elderly, reducing the rate of disease and cutting down malnutrition. Mayan Families have had three sets of 25 women and their children pass through Well Mother Well Baby and see statistically significant improvement in their lives We have had 65 kids in critical need receive food aid and education. Please go to our website for more information on our programs and impact: www.mayanfamilies.org

Target demographics: Indigenous Mayan Guatemalans living in extreme poverty

Direct beneficiaries per year: Thousands of Guatemalan families living in extreme poverty

Geographic areas served: Guatemala

Programs: Mayan Families programs: Student Sponsorship, Preschool Nutrition Centers, Tutoring Program, Reproductive Health & Family Planning, Family Assistance, Community Development, Natural Building Workshops, Medical Program, Elderly Care, Income Generating Programs, Microloans Programs, Animal Welfare, Women Health and Children Aid.

Community Stories

257 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Catherine18

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Small, grass roots organization with a big heart. Such a beautiful group of people with the right mission - helping others help themselves. Our group has served with them for five years now and will definitely go back again.

Previous Stories

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This is most sincere group of people to work with who are truly building bridges between people who are in need and those who can help fulfill those needs. They give the full experience of not just writing a check, but also allowing you the experience to meet the people whom you are helping. And it is an honor to be part of the work. I trust Mayan Families and the work they do. I have fundraised thousands of dollars on their behalf and will continue to work with them to give even more. I have brought numerous people to work there and all have had positive experiences. From building a home for a family to fitting a child with a pair of shoes, it amazes me how they are able to find the needs and fulfill them. I recommend this nonprofit to any and everyone.

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Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have worked with Mayan Families since 2010...and it has been a great organization to work with. I have organized 15 family oriented service trips and Mayan Families is our host organization. The staff cares about those they serve and are always very helpful with our volunteers. I love returning to Guatemala and Mayan Families and sharing it with our team members! Thank you!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

On my trip this year, I enjoyed every day with Mayan Families. They have great staff members that go out into the field with us and help with whatever we may need help with. They are great with our group and also with the Mayans that live at the houses we go visit. they have everything very well organized and if something isn't what it is supposed to be then they figure a way out to fix the problem. Throughout this week, the Mayan Families organization has been so beneficial and so nice that it makes me want to come down and work with them in the future!!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Mayan Families is a great organization that truly meets the needs of all the indigenous people of the area around Lake Atilan. I got to experience working with preschoolers, sponsored students, elderly feeding programs, installation of ONIL stove, handing out chickens and food baskets, and water filters to all age groups. The staff of Mayan Families welcomes you into their organization with open arms and smiles. Everyone should experience this great organization.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have watched this charity grow and grow! It is truly amazing! They have a dedicated team that really perseveres with a challenging clientele. I am always impressed by the efforts of everyone at Mayan Families to do their best! Excellent attitude! Very welcoming!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

We have been bringing groups to volunteer with Mayan Families since 2011 so we love working with them. I have visited several NGO's in Guatemala which all do wonderful work but I have found Mayan Families to be one of the best!

1 Katie178

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Absolutely amazing experience!!! Mayan Families was amazing to us and very good to the Mayan people! They do great work and really care about improving the lives of others! While we were there, we installed energy efficient stoves to improve the lives and health of the indigenous people in the community. I am honored that I got the chance to work with them and they are some of the most amazing and hard working people I have met! I would love to come back again and work with Mayan Families in the future and continue to help the great price of Guatemala!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This was my third time in Guatemala and working with Mayan Families in one year. Once again I had a great experience. One of the many reasons I continue to come back so frequently. I already have another trip scheduled for August of 2017. The staff at Mayan Families is very friendly and easy to work with. This trip, like my first was with my college Waukesha County Technical College. We annually take a group of healthcare students to work with Mayan Families and learn about the challenges facing the indigenous people of Guatemala, healthcare providers, and healthcare facilities. In addition to learning about all of the tremendous programs Mayan Families has to improve the lives of Guatemalans, we installed ONIL high efficiency wood burning stoves and SAWYER high efficiency water filters in peoples homes. This type of work has an immediate impact on the families respiratory health by diverting smoke out of the house via a chimney and GI health as their water is now free of bacteria and microorganisms. At one of the villages we served; a group of village women made us a traditional Guatemalan meal for lunch. The food was really good and abundant. This was an amazing act by the local women and it really showed their gratitude for the work we were doing in their village. These kind of experiences couldn't be possible for the average person if Mayan Families wasn't doing what they are doing. This can change your life. Not to mention Guatemala is a beautiful country, both in geography and it's inhabitants.

Previous Stories
5

Donor

Rating: 5

I have had the great pleasure of working with Mayan Families twice now. The first time was last January with my college. That trip completely changed my life and opened my eyes to the many issues facing the beautiful people of Guatemala. While working with Mayan Families the first time, I sponsored a child to go to school. This August, I took my 15 year old son to Panajachel and we worked with Mayan Families again. We installed some stoves, water filters and delivered food to a couple of pre-schools and the elderly feeding center in San Jorge where we also served the elderly. This trip had a profound effect on my son and reinforced my passion for helping the people of Guatemala. If it is at all possible, I highly recommend going to Panajachel and working with Mayan Families. They are a very transparent organization. When you make a donation to them, they show you where your money goes via pictures of your sponsor student or other donation recipient receiving their donation item. I sent our sponsor student a birthday gift, cake and food basket. The day after his birthday, I received a treasure trove of pictures of him and his mother at the Mayan Families head quarters receiving his gifts. I could go on and on and probably never say enough about Mayan Families and the work that they are doing for the indigenous people of Guatemala. My entire family will be returning to Panajachel in the summer of 2017 to do more great work with Mayan Families.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Last week was my first visit to Mayan Families in Pana. It was back to school week and the families were coming into pick up back to school supplies. The organization was amazing and the impact that sponsors make was clearly demonstrated.
The group I was with also had the opportunity to visit the pre-school in San Antonio, to deliver Pilas to 3 families and food baskets, toys and clothes to many more. The smiles, hugs and appreciation was overflowing from the recipients. Being able to not only sponsor a child but to have the opportunity to ask about a families needs and health and interact with the children provides so much joy.
We also had the opportunity to serve a meal and play bingo with the Elderly lunch program. The appreciation and hugs were overflowing.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have worked with Mayan Families for over 8 years. They are outstanding in ministry, in trasnparency, and integrity. I would recommend them without question and look forward to future opportunities to be in ministry with them.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Our group of 12 participated in July 2016 with Mayan Families and ready to go back again. The projects kept us involved with the Mayan people and educated us on their needs. I believe that Mayan Families offers sustainable change with programs that they are not only involved in but help run the programs. A transformational change came about within us. It was a maiden voyage that bears repeating and can only encourage others to get involved. If you can't go see for yourself, please take our experience as proof that 1) they need your help, 2) all funds go for a multiple of needs that would not be met unless we were helping and 3) the programs Mayan Families implement are making a difference. Also....you can support with your pocket book - sponsor a child's education, an elder's support for food (there is no govt. programs), towards emergency medical care, toward trade schools, and a multitude of other programs. You won't regret getting involved with Mayan Families.

Jeanine5

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I traveled to Guatemala for the first time with a company called Serengetee. They are in a close partnership with Mayan Families, and I cannot begin to describe how amazing my experience was. It was so much more inspiring than I could have ever imagined and every life touched will forever have a place in my heart. Mayan Families is constantly looking to improve the lives of everyone in contact with them. With that, the volunteers gain a new sense of looking at the world.

Brian155

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I only worked with the Mayan Families for a brief amount of time, but in that time I was able to see the good that they did for the community. The amount of support they give with such little funding and the passionate employees they have allow for them to change lives. The experience itself was very enlightening and allowed to change the lives of some fellow humans in need.

2 Maura O.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've worked with Mayan Families for 10 years. They are an incredible program! I recently got to visit the headquarters for two days. We toured two of the preschools. We also spend a day at the nutrition center in San Jorge, serving lunch to those in their Elder care program. It is truly incredible work they are doing in the area in and around Panajachel. I especially love that 90% of their staff are local indigenous members of the community they serve. They are truly living their mission!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I just returned from my second trip to Guatemala to volunteer with Mayan Families. I continue to be amazed at the great work they are all so committed to in a very impoverished area of the world. Education is a big part of what they do while helping to feed, shelter and heal the people of Guatemala. Everyone I have met is so committed to the people. I have met the student I sponsor through Mayan Families and I can truly see the difference MF has made in so many lives. I will continue to sponsor and volunteer for MF as they are making a difference in the world!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I visited Mayan Families in April 2016. I met many of the clients they serve at several of MF's facilities as well as in their homes. The staff was very accessible, very dedicated and very eager to get us involved in the program activities. I was impressed how much they rely on the locals at all levels of their work. As much as possible they provide local solutions to local needs. Their emphasis on and efforts toward transparency were impressive. The people they serve are beautiful and seem genuinely and extremely grateful for the needs that they meet.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Mayan Families is an incredible organization led by three hard working, dedicated individuals - Dwight, Sharon and Patti. We have been volunteering with them for over 10 years and continue to be impressed with how committed the staff are to the Mayan people. We trust the money we donate is used in the most effective manner and do not hesitate in the least to promote them. Bob & Pam

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I went to Guatemala with my college on a Transcultural Healthcare Trip1/1/16-1/10/16. We worked with Mayan Families. I had no idea of what to expect as I have never done anything like this before in my life. Mayan Families were great! They explained everything that the organization is about and why they do what they do. They also were very clear in what we would do as a group of volunteers. We installed 12 Onil stoves in 3 different communities. We also had the opportunity to serve lunch to some of the elderly women of San Jorge. I was deeply touched by the entire experience working with Mayan Families. I felt a deep need to do more than what we as a group had just done; so I sponsored a child for the school year. I am planning a trip in late July to take my 15 year old son down to meet the child we sponsored who is 9 days older than my son. We will volunteer our time with Mayan Families again while there. I am also planning on going on the trip with school again next year during the winter break. I will tell anyone who will listen how great of an experience I had and would highly recommend people going and doing something for someone else and experience the wonderful feeling you get when you make a difference in someone's life.

Mari12

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Amazing charity. I spend 4 days with them and it was a spiritually uplifting experience. you can see immediately how your donations big and small are helping them accomplish their goals. I am looking forward to spending more time with them in Panajachel.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I went to go volunteer and saw the amazing differences they make in the community. It was truly an amazing experience to work with them and will continue to.