AMA and Women's Circles
All Highland Support Project Guatemalan initiatives work in conjunction with its sister organization, Asociación de Mujeres del Altiplano (AMA), located in Quetzaltenango, Guatemala.
AMA works in our partner Highland communities to establish local Women’s Circles, which provide participants with a network of mutual support and a forum for sharing dreams, fears and collaborating on solutions. AMA facilitates technical and educational training on topics that range from civic participation, entrepreneurship, self-esteem, nutrition, Maya cultural identity and community resilience.
Maya Arts Program
The Mayan Arts Program (MAP) is a collaboration between the Highland Support Project (HSP), The Association of Highland Women (AMA), and the International Maya League. MAP connects rural indigenous communities of Guatemala with resources to promote creative and critical thinking skills through a curriculum that respects local culture and history.
Clean-Air Stove Building
Epidemiological research demonstrates that the two leading causes of mortality in our partner communities in Guatemala are upper respiratory infections and waterborne contaminants. For children under five, respiratory illness is the leading cause of death (WHO). These are both linked to the practice of cooking on open pit fires in tiny, unventilated homes.
As rural providers, midwives can fill a large gap in the medical system, but the majority of midwives in the region are over 53 years old and nearing retirement. There is great need for healthcare providers in rural areas. There is a stark difference in access to health care between rural communities and urban centers in Guatemala. Although maternal and infant mortality statistics have improved dramatically in the last decade in large part to government investment in nutrition and maternal health services, maternal health is still a situation of national urgency due to difficulties providing services and care in rural communities.
House of Design Pixan is a fair trade textile workshop in the western Highlands of Guatemala. Pixan, meaning “spirit” in the Maya language of K’iche, is an association of indigenous artisan weavers, expert in the ancient techniques of back-strap and pedal loom weaving and embroidery, and an initiative of AMA (Highland Support Project’s organizational partner).
HSP has partnered with Fundación Yanapak Yachachikuna (FYYChE), an indigenous led education initiative, to aid Kichwa community schools in Chimborazo, Ecuador and give children from the villages a chance at escaping poverty. In the Kichwa language, “yanapak yachachikuna” translates to “servant teachers,” which is what we aim to be for the communities we work alongside.
A Different Approach
A Different Approach (ADA) is a social enterprise to equip talented first nation professionals with support to provide management services and training in their communities to assist tribal enterprise, community programs and entrepreneurs increase resilience.