Organization for the Development of the Indigenous Maya (ODIM)
Human Development Fund grants help further the work of ODIM in two Mayan communities of Lake Atitlán. ODIM aims to improve the quality of life of members of these communities through health services and educational programs. ODIM focuses on empowering members of the community to have a hopeful future for themselves and their children. Projects include:
- Clínica Sanjuanerita: A medical clinic/education building in San Juan La Laguna, and Clínica Chuitinamit, a medical clinic/education building in San Pablo La Laguna, provide primary care services to the people of San Juan and San Pablo La Laguna. In conjunction with WINGS of Antigua, Guatemala, ODIM coordinates training of Mayan women in family planning and conducts cervical cancer detection clinics.
- Mamá y Yo Saludable Program: Guatemala has the 4th highest level of malnutrition in the world for children 5 years and younger; and the community of San Pablo La Laguna reflects the harshness of this reality. As an answer, ODIM created a comprehensive nutrition program “Mamá y Yo Saludable.” The model for this program is a global initiative called “The First 1000 Days” in which pregnant mothers are offered healthcare, education, peer support and food assistance through the first 1000 days of life of their child; giving that child the chance to develop mentally and physically in this window so critical to the child’s future.
- Health Promoter Education: ODIM has trained approximately 25 local health promoters from San Juan and San Pablo. The health promoters reach out into the community to help create sustainable healthcare that will lead to prevention and better lives for the people. Health promoters lead classes in basic first aid, nutrition, hygiene, common illnesses and diseases, basic anatomy and body systems, and diabetes care.
- Beca Program: ODIM also provides scholarships and a tutoring program for 19 of the poorest children in San Pablo La Laguna. Scholarships provide children in San Pablo with the resources and support they need to attend and succeed in school. The donations for this program cover registration, monthly tuition, books, supplies, school and gym uniforms, two pairs of shoes, and four hours of tutoring per week. $600 covers all of the program costs for a scholarship recipient for one year.
- Staff Scholarship Program: ODIM provides partial scholarships to staff members who wish to pursue a degree in health or education in order to better serve ODIM clients.
- Home Construction: Volunteer teams from the US work with local craftsmen to build two-room, cinder block homes for families in San Pablo La Laguna who are most in need of safe, healthy housing.
María Madre de Los Pobres Parish, La Chacra, San Salvador
A program of our sister parish to provide elementary and secondary students with medical care, school uniforms and school supplies each year. Interested individuals or families may support an elementary-aged child (grades K-9) for $300 per year or a secondary-aged child (grades 10-12) for $360 per year. Currently Northaven godparents provide annual funds for 15 children in the parish, and many more children are awaiting a godparent.
A child in El Salvador needs you. Will you help?
Micro-loan Community Banks
The Northaven Human Development Fund grants support the development of micro-loan community banks in the parish. These loans help residents establish small businesses to support their families.
Canton Huisisilapa, La Libertad
Huisisilapa Youth Artisan Collective
“Creating a sustainable future through fair trade crafts.” The Youth Artisan Collective of Huisisilapa was formed in 2004 to provide sustainable income for the young people of Canton Huisisilapa, El Salvador, through the sale of the handmade crafts they produce.
The young members of the collective represent families who fled their native departments of Chalatenango and Cabañas during the Salvadoran civil war. Many of the leaders of the collective spent their early childhood in UNCHR refugee camps in Honduras, returning to establish the new community of Huisisilapa in the department of La Libertad after the 1992 Peace Accords were signed.
In 2007 with the financial support of the Northaven Human Development Fund and other organizations, the youth and community volunteers completed construction of an artisan workshop/youth center. The building is designed as a multiuse space to contribute to the positive, organizational, and communitarian development of the youth of Huisisilapa.