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  • Photo: Jamie Grant for Mercy Corps

Our strategy

Lift indigenous Guatemalans out of poverty by providing access to land, more nutritious food and healthcare. Empower communities to address the causes and consequences of violence through prevention interventions.

The context

About 54 percent of the general population lives in poverty, compared to 80% of the rural population, where the majority of the indigenous population lives. Fertile land — the most important means of production in this agricultural economy — is concentrated in the hands of a few.

Land reform since the end of Guatemala’s 36-year civil war in 1996 has advanced in fits and starts. Chronic insecurity and high crime rates in the country, especially in urban areas in and around Guatemala City, further limit economic potential. Guatemala also struggles with government corruption, crippled infrastructure, and high rates of malnutrition.

Our work

  • Conflict & Governance: Strengthening local violence prevention initiatives and linking to national initiatives for a holistic and integrated approach to decreasing violence and crime rates.
  • Agriculture & Food: Providing nutrition education to mothers with young children, and helping small farmers diversify and trace crops, improve quality and increase revenues.
  • Health: Providing health and hygiene education to build healthier communities.

All stories about Guatemala