Action Against Hunger have been working in Guatemala since 1996

Guatemala

An estimated 1.7 million people have been affected by the volcano de Fuego erruptions on 3rd and 5th June 2018.

Country Overview

The political situation remains highly fragile in Guatemala. A government crisis in 2017 resulted in the resignation of several ministers. The government’s inability to ensure access to basic services (73 per cent of the population have no medical coverage and 53 per cent have insufficient income to cover their nutritional needs) is only exacerbating the situation of the most vulnerable in the face of social inequality and the impact of climate change. Public safety, migration, drug trafficking, education and poor access to clean water and basic sanitation are some of the challenges facing Guatemalans, and more than half of its population lives below the national poverty threshold, being highly vulnerable to seasonal hunger and food shortages.

The changing weather patterns in Guatemala and the rest of Central America indicates an ominous rise in droughts and hurricanes. In 2014, the Government of Guatemala declared a national emergency due to the severe drought caused by the El Niño weather phenomenon. More recently in June 2018, the Fuego Volacano or 'Fire Volcano' errupted in the Department of Escuintla affecting an estimated 1.7 million people. Nearly 13,000 people were displaced and 110 people lost their lives. You can read more about this natural disaster here

 

31,206
People helped in 2017

What we're doing

Action Against Hunger has been present in Guatemala since 1996, during which we’ve helped communities recover from the effects of several natural disasters and storms, while working with at-risk communities to address endemic economic instability and poverty. 

We also work in collaboration with national and local authorities to address the impact of annual food shortages, drought and flooding, by building local capacity to cope with disasters and improving early warning systems. Furthermore, we respond to acute emergencies by supplying emergency food and vitamin supplements, supplying tools to assist the local clean-up efforts, repairing damaged wells and restoring safe water sources where flood damage contaminates supplies.

Our programmes in Guatemala are a mix of emergency response and long term developmental projects. They include: 

  • Preparing communities for potential natural disasters
  • Improving access to clean water and sanitation facilities (particularly in rural areas)
  • Screening and treating children for malnutrition
  • Providing emergency hygeine kits 
  • Implementing cash for work programmes to improve people's income 
  • Building and providing emergency shelters 

 

Guatemala charity work
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Photo credits:  © Lys Arango for Action Against Hunger

Related reading

Facts

Number of staff
30
Operating since
1996
Based in
Chiquimula, Zacapa, El Progresso