Sunday, May 8, 2011

Guatemalan Mothers and Mother's Day

If you are a mother in the States, Happy Mother's Day to you today! If you would like to claim another day to celebrate, you can celebrate Guatemalan Mother's Day with us Tuesday, May 10, 2011!

Where do Guatemalan's take their mom's out for Mother's Day? Many, many Guatemalans that I know take their mother's out to Pollo Campero, the nations favorite chicken restaurant. (Not all mom's go there, but I'm always surprised at the amount I hear of who do. :)) Mother’s Day is celebrated on May 10th in Guatemala, and working mothers have the day off.

Many women, however, will not take that day to celebrate and won't have time to rest. According to

"Guatemalan women are among the poorest of Central America. Yes, there are wealthy mothers living in gated communities, driven around by chauffeurs with armed security guards protecting them, their homes and their children. They are part of the small minority that controls the majority of wealth in Guatemala, and for the most part do not act particularly interested in the plight of the indigenous population unless they are giving lip service to dignitaries of foreign countries.

The majority of the population of Guatemala (76%) lives on $2.00 a day. The infant mortality rate is 45/1000 children per year and the under five years of age mortality rate is 56/1000 children per year. Although the maternal mortality rate is being reduced, it is still very high: 240/100,000 per live births. Guatemalan women have a life expectancy of 66 years, but if they are part of the native population, it is a mere 44. With only one doctor per 2,356 people, and an even poorer ratio in the outlying and mountainous regions, some women will not see a doctor in their lifetime."

There are many, many things that need to improve, both with women and in general in Guatemala. There are many aid groups from around the world, many from the U.S. who have different forms of aid for the people here. How about supporting one of them for Mother's Day this year and helping take a small bit of the load off of a Guatemalan mother's shoulders?

Some reliable in-country programs we trust include:
Un Techo Para Mi Pais
Casa Guatemala
Education and More
Refuge International

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