Report from Guatemala

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ISHR joined forces to help the victims of 2020 hurricanes

San Pedro Carchá, Guatemala. At the end of 2020, hurricanes ETA and IOTA doubly hit Guatemala and its villages, leaving more than 900,000 children without homes and schools. It is estimated that today, more than 3,000 children and teenagers are living in shelters.

The International Society for Human Rights Guatemala Chapter, Cofraternidad Carcelaria de Guatemala (Prison Fellowship Guatemala) joined forces to help the victims of this terribly affected area.

They received donations of food, books, notebooks and clothing, which were donated in the affected areas. At present, aid is still being collected to be able to re-establish education in these affected areas, since there are no furniture, roofs or school supplies to receive classes.

San Pedro Carchá is a city in the Coban municipality of the Alta Verapaz department in the north-central region of the Republic of Guatemala. With its 279,972 inhabitants, it is the fifth most populous city in Guatemala.

Official Language: Spanish
Other Languages: Q´eqch´i

440 affected schools and among these are the following schools that have been helped with books, desks, certain repairs, clothing for children:

  • Escuela Oficial Rural Mixta Caserío Secacao
  • Escuela Oficial Rural Mixta Caserío Secaj
  • Escuela Oficial Rural Mixta Caserío Sechaj Esquipulas
  • Escuela Oficial Rural Mixta Caserío Sechin- Senimlaha, Aldea Campur
  • Escuela Oficial Rural Mixta Caserío Sechinacoyou
  • Escuela Oficial Rural Mixta Caserío Secuajbal Setal
  • Escuela Oficial Rural Mixta Caserío Seguachil
  • Escuela Oficial Rural Mixta Caserío Sehix
  • Escuela Oficial Rural Mixta Caserío Semau, Aldea Campur

Affected classrooms after the storms.

As a result of the storms at least 150 affected educational establishments were left uninhabitable.

The area is characterized by a devastating picture of the affected schools. The schools, those spaces full of joy and curiosity, are now deserts devastated by the catastrophe in Guatemala. Desks, books, notebooks, blackboards, everything is stained in shades of ocher, with layers of dried mud, are a cruel reminder of the fury of the storms.

Dozens of muddy and useless desks have been piled up in the open air while classrooms look empty and discolored. In the midst of this gray and sterile landscape, Azucena Arévalo, principal and only teacher of six grades of the Escuela Oficial Rural Mixta, wonders where she is going to seat the children when they return to school.

Cups, notebooks, books and T-shirts were delivered to the Rural Official School of Aldea Campur. The aid was transferred in private vehicles to be able to enter the affected areas to distribute the aid.

Report repared by Lic Maria Renee Bobadilla and Haydee Marin.