Monday, November 28, 2011

31 Days of Giving

In an effort to bring awareness and assistance to the delicate situation many of our orphans live in, we are hosting a special fundraiser for the month of December highlighting specific needs each family currently has.  A note will be made by each entry indicating if the donation has already been made. 
If a donation is made as a gift and you would like a card to be written to inform the honored person, please email Shannon. 

December 1st   $50 Medical Visit
Thank You!!  Juan Carlos is very thin and has had difficulty eating for over a year due to stomach pains. He urgently needs to see a doctor to diagnose what is wrong and prescribe medication or order further testing.

December 2   $60 Month of Physical Therapy
Norma has made great progress in her daily physical therapy but it is very expensive for her grandparents. $60 will cover the cost of one month of physical therapy including the transportation to get Norma and her grandmother to the appointments.

December 3   $80 100 Pounds of Black Beans
  Cristina and her elderly father have very little income to support themselves and food is really hard to come by. They often don’t eat the whole day, and when they do usually it is only tortillas. $80 will buy 100 pounds of black beans that will last Cristina and her father many weeks.

December 4   $120 Double Bed Frame
   Cindy and Ingrid recently moved the mattress off their bed so their father can sleep on the frame (with no mattress) and the girls can sleep on the mattress (with no frame). For $120 the girls can get a new double bed frame and move their mattress off the drafty and damp floor.

December 5   $200 Month of Food
These four orphans have been receiving food donations for the past two years since their mother died but the donations have become less reliable, jeopardizing the children's future to remain with their aunt and uncle. Donate a month of food for this family in honor of a loved one and you can select which month they will receive it – maybe in honor of someone’s birthday or a special anniversary.

December 6   $40 Three Months of Candles
Thank You! Maria and her grandparents light their house with candles since they don’t have electricity. For $40 you can give three months of candles to light the nights for this family.

December 7   $150 New Traditional Clothes
Thank You!  Cristina lives alone with her 82 year old father, caring for him and the house while also attending school. Her family is very poor. When asked what she needed most she said a new traditional clothes, as the outfit she was wearing was the only thing she had she would wear in public. Cristina has a hard life with few rewards - a new outfit would be such a wonderful gift for her to receive!

December 8   $40 Large Food Basket Plus 30 Eggs
  These four siblings, ages 12 to 19 years old, are making it on their own. They earn just enough to eat beans and rice most days, and they rarely get supplemental food like eggs or vegetables. Give Oscar, Marvin, Edy and Angelica a large food basket plus a flat of 30 eggs to wish them a happy holidays!

December 9   $55 Table and Two Chairs
Thank You!  Claudia and her grandmother have no table or chairs. The grandmother sits on a woven mat to eat her meals and Claudia sits on a rock. $55 would buy a small table and two chairs, giving a lot of comfort and dignity to this dear little family.

December 10   $25 Blanket
Thank You!  Ana gets very cold at night and would like a blanket to cover her and her sister, Blanca. Doesn't everyone deserve something so basic?

December 11   $50 Double Mattress
Thank You!  Grandparents Miguel and Rosa sleep with little 3 year old Leonardo on a bed with no mattress. Give the gift of comfort and restful sleep to this hard working family!

December 12   $63 Water Filter
It is possible that Juan Carlos became sick from drinking contaminated water. His family does not have a water filter. For $63 you can give Juan Carlos and his six siblings clean water for the next two years.

December 13   $120 Double Bed Frame
Thank You!  Five sisters currently sleep on two beds – the three older girls on the double and the two younger ones on a single. Neither bed has a mattress and the double bed is so crowded the girls bicker over space. If we could replace the single bed with a double, they would all have enough space to sleep. $120 will buy a double bed frame.

December 14   $50 Double Mattress
Thank You!  When these girls receive a new double bed frame they will be happy to have the additional space, but they still need a mattress to provide a good sleep. A new thick mattress costs $50 and would be such a delight for these children. 

December 18   $75  Supplemental Food

December 19   $35 Food Basket
 Lesly and Elisa live with their grandparents and would be delighted to have a basket of delicious food to share.

December 20   $90 Home Repair

December 21   $75  Three Blankets
 This family is in need of three new double beds with mattresses but until we can raise the funds for that, three blankets will help keep them warm on the cold and windy nights.  

December 22   $45 Water Filter Replacement

Thank You! Oliver, Luis and Einar have been using a water filter that is over a year past its replacement date. The family continues to use it even though it takes all day to filter a jar of water and it is doubtful the bacteria is still being removed. For only $45 you can give two years of clean water to this family.

December 23   $50 100 Pounds of Corn
 One hundred pounds of corn will feed Maria and her grandparents three meals a day for three weeks. Add $15 to donate two chickens to give a rare and nutritious treat to their diet.

December 24   $175  Home Repair Fund
 The father of Juan Pablo and Juan Carlos says their greated need is to have their metal room repaired as it leaks badly.  The repair estimate is $350 but if we could receive half the expense for this long overdue repair, we'd be much closer to keeping this family warm and dry.

December 25   $170 Onil Stove
 Cristina cooks for herself and her elderly father over an openfire outside. Onil stoves are safer, preventing burns, and healthier to use since they are significantly less smoky. They also use less firewood, which is expensive and/or time consuming to collect. An Onil stove would make her cooking responsibilities so much easier and allow her more time to focus on school.

December 26   $170 Double Bed with Mattress
  Blanca and Ana have been sleeping together on a single bed but now that they are older and larger they are very squished and need a new double bed.

 December 27   $50 Double Mattress
Thank You!  To complete the sleeping arrangement for this family with five sisters, the old double bed needs a mattress so finally the whole family can have a comfortable place to sleep.

 December 28   $30 Family Care Pack
Thank You!  Oliver, Luis and Einar said they often don’t have enough tooth care and personal hygiene products. For $30 they can receive a few months supply of toothbrushes, toothpaste, body soap, dish soap and clothes washing soap.

December 29   $100 Food
  When asked what her most urgent need is, Isabel is clear to say it is food.  After her sister died, Isabel took in her sister’s seven children and she is raising them alone.  She earns income by washing clothes but earns less than $2.00 (15Q) a day.  If she is sick or can’t find someone hiring, she begs on the street or knocks on neighbors' doors to ask for food.  Otherwise no one in the family would eat that day.  Isabel can stretch $100 of food to last her large family two weeks, and they'll have fuller bellies those two weeks than they have had in months. 

December 30    $35 Leather Shoes
Thank You!  Claudia has only one pair of shoes and they are falling apart.  Let her step into the new year with a new pair of shoes!

December 31   $???  Orphan Care General Fund
  The orphan care program is just beginning and has no budget to provide for its many expenses such as children's visits to the dentist and doctor, desperate food situations, or new families joining the program.  Let’s start the year off right with a positive account and many wishes to bring crucial support to our orphan’s new families!

Look Who Graduated From 6th Grade!

This is Cristina. She will be 17 on January 1.  Her mother died three years ago and she has been caring for the home and her 82 year old father ever since. She wants to continue her education next year even with all the home responsibilities she has. I think she deserves a huge round of applause for her accomplishments! 

This is Ricardo.  He is 14 years old.  He is the oldest of four siblings and lives with an aunt and uncle after losing both of his parents in the past two years.  Ricardo works hard both in school and out.  He has overcome a lot of challenges and we are happy to see him progressing to middle school next year!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Welcome to Mayan Families' Orphan Care Blog

Mayan Families provides life-saving support for thousands of indigenous Mayans living in the poverty stricken Guatemalan Highlands. Among these families are some that have additional hardships as they try their best to raise orphaned children. In a land and time where food is scarce, proper medical care is rare and children often have to forgo school, it is especially difficult to take in additional children to raise as your own. If not for the support from Mayan Families, many of the children on this blog would be separated from all they know, sometimes even from each other, and sent to live in an orphanage. This blog is designed to bring attention to these special families. In most of the families the children have lost both their mother and father. At times we include families where the father is still living with the children after the mother has died if they need significant additional support.

We currently have 14 families in the Orphan Care Program. Please click the links on the right to learn about each of the families. As a family's page is updated it is moved to the top of the list.

Please visit to learn more about other ways Mayan Families is helping the people of Guatemala.