Guatemala

Families Now Producing Most of Their Own Food

As FRB’s Guatemala Sibinal program concludes, local families are now producing 75% of their own food, meaning they can spend more on education, health care, and housing. Magdalena tells her family’s story.

Before the program, my family only produced corn and a few vegetables. We didn’t have a source of income, though, so my husband traveled to Mexico for months at a time to work on the coffee farms. I was left to take care of the children, the house and the farming all by myself. We had no hope things would ever change.

But when we began our education in agro-ecology our situation started to change. I like farming the earth naturally, making our own organic fertilizers and insecticides and planting a greater variety of vegetables. At first, it was hard to stop using chemicals because that’s what we were used to. But gradually we found that what we grew organically tasted better, and we had less and less need to buy pesticides and fertilizer.

My husband is home more. He and I and our children farm the earth together and are more united as a family. We’re healthier because our food is better, more varied. We even earn an income. People come to our house to buy vegetables, and we also sell them at the Mexican border. Our whole community has improved because several families are farming and caring for our Mother Earth or eating more nutritious food from our farm plots.

We want to say thank you to everyone who supported us through the years. We gained knowledge, we put it into practice, and we continue improving every day.

Caption: Simple techniques like transplanting seedlings promote more frequent harvests and profitability

Guatemala Sibinal
Led by Mennonite Central Committee
4 Communities, 125 Households, 549 Individuals

12/01/2017 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

Free to Serve

April 26, 2016 - On March 29, I was honored to be among the 250 people gathered at the Hall of Laureates in Des Moines, Iowa for “Women and Agriculture: The Road to Global Security”. Organized by the Foods Resource Bank, Oxfam America, and the World Food Prize Foundation, the event celebrated the critical leadership of women and the importance of ensuring human rights and eliminating hunger in order to achieve global peace and security.

Iowa’s Senator Joni Ernst shared a particularly powerful source of inspiration. While in college, she had the opportunity, through a government exchange program, to work alongside peasant farmers on a collective farm in then communist Ukraine. After a full day of manual labor, there were no tractors available on the collective farm, the Ukrainians and Americans would eat supper together. These conversations often included questions about agriculture in the United States, but the Ukrainians were even more interested in what it was like to be free.

What is it like to be free?

05/10/2016 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

In Guatemala, Lucía achieves great things

Foods Resource Bank’s Guatemala Four Departments program works through local indigenous partners of World Renew, an FRB member organization, in four geographic regions of the country. One of these, Asociación de Desarrollo Integral Polochic (ADIP), assists famers in remote Mayan communities in adopting sustainable agriculture practices to improve their production and crop diversification.

Lucía, an active participant in this program, recently shared her story:

03/26/2014 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

Guatemala - Totonicapan-Nebaj Program Prayer Request

Dear Friends of FRB, 

We wanted to share some sad news with all of you.  We recently received an update from our partner in the Guatemala Totonicapan-Nebaj program, CIEDEG, that Margarita Hermoso, the woman who a group of FRB visitors built a greenhouse with, passed away last week.

CIEDEG staff said that she had been ill for some time and recently passed away. They are not sure what her illness was as she had tried to get medical attention,

07/24/2013 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

Nonprofit plants corn for Bridgewater, SD farmer

BRIDGEWATER — Kenton and Autumn Hofer are no strangers to helping others.
Kenton Hofer has built a house on a mission trip to Guatemala, and the Bridgewater couple donate crops to Foods Resource Bank, a Christian organization that takes money from donated crops and turns it into grant funds for agricultural development.

So in February, when Kenton knew he’d need a bone marrow transplant, they went online and filled out an application to receive assistance from Farm Aid, a nonprofit organization that rallies volunteers to provide planting and harvesting assistance to farmers who have experienced major injury, illness or disaster.

07/17/2013 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

Learning Through Doing

Three FRB work learning groups recently returned from Guatemala and Nicaragua. These intergenerational groups went deeper in our learning about FRB as we spent more time in each local community than happens in a regular FRB visit. We supported people in work they were doing for their own communities.

05/20/2013 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

Guatemalan Pollo Con Coca Cola Recipe

Newsletter: 

Here is a recipe for Chicken with Coca Cola that a recent FRB group traveling in Guatemala enjoyed quite a lot.

04/24/2013 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

In Guatemala, Roberto Satisfies Passion for Farming with Training

Roberto, a longtime farmer and member of one of the communities served by FRB’s Guatemala-Four Departments program, is taking good advantage of the appropriate farming techniques he’s learned from the program. Roberto is passionate about agriculture. During his childhood and adolescence, he lived with his parents and worked with them on various private farms in Quetzaltenango. His family had to spend all they earned – about three quetzales (40 cents today) a week – so they were never able to pull themselves out of poverty.

03/25/2013 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

The Popular Banquet

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In the spirit of Christmas and the approaching New Year, we would like to share a song from Juan Pablo Morales, the Program Coordinator for the Guatemala-Sibinal program supported by FRB and Mennonite Central Committee. Juan Pablo was an FRB overseas visitor this past summer and sang this song at the meeting. Here's a link to an MCC podcast that features Juan Pablo singing El Banquete Popular (The People's Banquet).

http://www.mcc.org/stories/podcasts/popular-banquet

12/26/2012 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

Working and Learning with FRB

This past February I traveled to Nebaj, Guatemala on a Work-Learning trip with Foods Resource Bank (FRB). Our project in Guatemala was to work hand-in-hand with members of a small village to construct a greenhouse. The hope was to provide greater food and nutritional security to these mountain villagers throughout the year. FRB’s main goal on their Work-Learning trips, however, is to give motivation, support, and solidarity to the people in poverty who receive FRB funds. So, while we were there to build a greenhouse, more importantly we were there to build relationships. And that was the part of the trip that I will remember the most.

10/01/2012 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More
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