For 25 years, Feed the Children has gone beyond simply providing Guatemalan children with food. We are creating brighter futures by teaching and empowering children and their communities through our programs. Nearly half the children under 5 in Guatemala are chronically malnourished. Feed the Children works closely with mothers and caregivers to help them make healthy decisions about what they are feeding their children and train them in low-cost solutions that can prevent many diseases caused by unclean water and unsafe hygiene practices. Our education programs support children by providing TOMS shoes, backpacks, and grade appropriate school supplies at the beginning of the school year so that children have the materials they need to further their education.
Guatemala, known as the Land of Eternal Spring, is one of the countries along the Ring of Fire, a belt of active volcanoes and earthquake epicenters bordering the Pacific Ocean. The Ring of Fire accounts for up to 90% of the world's earthquakes and some 75% of the world's volcanic activity. Despite proximity to volcanos, the vast majority of the populace resides in the southern half of the country, particularly in the mountainous regions, and more than half of the population lives in rural areas.
Guatemala is a predominantly poor country that struggles in several areas of health and development, including infant, child, and maternal mortality, malnutrition, literacy, and contraceptive awareness and use. Nearly one-half of Guatemala's children under age five are chronically malnourished, one of the highest malnutrition rates in the world. The country's large indigenous population is disproportionately affected by poverty and disease. Almost half of Guatemala's population is under age 19, making it the youngest population in Latin America.
In Guatemala, FEED is working to improve the nutritional status of children under 2; promote access to education through various forms of educational support; encourage healthy behaviors by providing training on water, sanitation and hygiene; and empower families and communities to overcome poverty and become self-sustaining.
One of the ways we do this is through school gardens. FEED provides seeds and other planting materials that are needed for the gardens, and our staff train school leaders, teachers, and children on how to plant and grow produce that is locally available and high in nutritional value. The produce from these gardens is used in the school meals program and provides children with much needed vitamins and minerals. Students who help tend the gardens gain a skillset that can be transferred to their homes and learn how to take responsibility for the success of the garden.
Would you consider partnering with FEED to continue this important work? Your support enables us to continue implementing innovative and productive school-based activities like gardening.