50% of Guatemalan children suffer from chronic malnutrition, which can cause stunting, mental problems, and lifelong health issues if left untreated by the age of two. To combat malnutrition, we help provide monthly maternal health and nutrition classes to those at risk.
IN LESS THAN A YEAR, WE HAVE ALREADY SEEN LOWER MALNUTRITION RATES.
This program is a great opportunity for our scholarship students to shadow nutritionists through the health screening process. They are also learn to conduct the screenings and education themselves. Through this opportunity, these young women gain leadership and job skills that they could not learn elsewhere.
Encarnacion Piox Tecu has been growing amaranth in her garden for 5 years. She produces seed to sell, as well as products that use this valuable and highly nutritious grain. Amaranth was an important staple in traditional Maya diets, but has largely fallen out of use because it requires significant labor to mill and prepare for distribution.
Amaranth is critical to our health and nutrition program in Guatemala because it is high in protein and is a source of amino acids and key vitamins and minerals. Last year, a nutritionist worked with the Qachuu Aloom Association to develop healthy recipes using amaranth and other locally grown ingredients. We continue to use those recipes to make products like cereal bars that can be provided to mothers with young children suffering from chronic malnutrition.
Through this program, we can support healthier diets, as well as the local farmers who are producing this healthy grain.