Mission: Mission: WINGS creates opportunities for Guatemalan families to improve their lives by providing them with family planning education and access to reproductive health services.
Vision: We envision a Guatemala where every person of or nearing reproductive age:
-Has pertinent knowledge and complete access to reproductive health and family planning services;
-Is free from cultural or religious constraints to use family planning methods;
-Is able to use family planning methods safely and healthfully;
-Can openly and comfortably discuss reproductive issues with their partners and/or parents.
Target demographics: Women, men, adolescents in Guatemala
Direct beneficiaries per year: Approx. 20,000 women, men and adolescents in Guatemala
Geographic areas served: Guatemala
Programs: Family Planning Initiative - WINGS' Family Planning Program aims to ensure that Guatemalans are able to make informed decisions around family planning and that they have access to methods when desired. The program revolves around addressing barriers, including geographic isolation, inability to pay for services, lack of knowledge, cultural and language barriers, and paternalistic norms.
Cervical Cancer Detection & Treatment - WINGS has been providing cervical cancer detection and treatment services since 2001. Through this program, we bring these vital services to underserved areas to help prevent this life-threatening illness. During screening clinics, WINGS' staff also provide education and counseling regarding family planning, so that women have a private place to discuss their options and how to access services.
Youth WINGS - Youth WINGS trains selected youth aged 14-19 in mostly Mayan communities to provide information on reproductive health and family planning to their peers.
WINGS for Men - The WINGS for Men program conducts workshops for men on reproductive health issues, trains peer educators to act as advocates in their communities, increases awareness about reproductive health and family planning using mass media campaigns, and sensitizes health care workers to men's needs and concerns.
Advocates for Youth - This program was developed to improve implementation of the 2006 Law of Universal Access to Family Planning. Working with the Ministries of Health and Education in Chimaltenango, Guatemala, WINGS will train teachers and health care professionals in the provision of sex education and youth-friendly reproductive health services.
As the former Communications Coordinator for WINGS, I was able to spend time in the field interviewing women, men, and youth about their participation in WINGS' program. I heard so many touching stories about how the organization had made an impact on the lives of the participants and their families. I also heard many vehement thank-yous which convinced me how directly donations to WINGS make a difference to families who need the most help. On an organizational level, from the time before I was employed by WINGS, until the current day, I have been impressed by WINGS' model which employs educators on the ground to reach out to their own communities in a culturally sensitive way. It is also admirable that WINGS continues to strive to improve their outreach strategy. Overall, I highly recommend this organization.
This program is almost a one of a kind here in the Antigua Guatemala area. It is so desperately needed, and they do so much. I assist a family of shoe shiners, Papa, Martin (16), Gregorio (15), Juan Carlos (14) and Luciano (9). The family lost a baby girl to pneumonia about a year ago because they could not afford proper care. Eight months ago they had another baby, Israel, there happens to be another brother around 19 who lives in Quiche, never comes to Antigua, but I just know they are going to try for another girl. I have sat Martin down and had him watch your site page with teens talking to teens, but Papa is way out of my league. You are a great program, desperately needed.
I have been fpllowing the work of Wings for several years and their approach to addressing the needs of families is very innovative, effective and important. An example of their work that I have found impressive is meeting with membets of the army and educating them about family plannng and prevention of sexually transmitted infections. Also Wings trains local community members to share information about the importance of spacing children and other reproductive health issues.
I visited the Wings office and talked with staff when I was in Guatemala a couple years ago. (I was part of Social Work Graduate School trip.) We found the staff to be very sincere and informed, but also gentle and kind. I came away confident that they are doing important work, in a very competent, culturally appropriate way. Family life is truly enhanced by their efforts.