Project HOPE's extensive relationship with Guatemala began in 1976 when HOPE responded to a devastating earthquake. In 1998, HOPE began offering services to women in Guatemala through its Village Health Banks (VHB) program.
Combining microcredit and health education, the program helps vulnerable populations, particularly impoverished women and their children, by offering education and income generation as a means for improving quality of life. Through this program women are offered access to resources including financial capital, personal savings and health information.
In 2001, we began a child survival program in the Boca Costa region of Guatemala. The program focused on improving the health of women and children residing in or migrating to coffee plantations. Focusing on areas such as immunizations, nutrition, breastfeeding, maternal newborn care and HIV/AIDS education, HOPE helped establish basic health units and also facilitated training of rural health promoters in maternal child health topics.
Project HOPE has also assisted the people of Guatemala with disaster and humanitarian relief efforts. In 2005, in response to Hurricane Stan, Project HOPE donated $3 million to help restore the health care system. In 2007, 2008, 2010 and again in 2011, Project HOPE medical volunteers from the around the United States participated in the U.S. Navy's Continuing Promise humanitarian mission, joining their military counterparts providing medical care and health education to the people of Guatemala.
When Elmira Cab Quia read that Project HOPE would be visiting the Hospital Nacional at Puerto Barrios, she knew she had to go.
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