In School Health Training Program in San Juan La Laguna
Organized by: Fallon Burke
Rising Minds is a 501c3 U.S. based non-profit organization whose mission is to bridge cultural, economic and developmental gaps through the integration of education, awareness, and action in Guatemala. We aim to inspire locally committed and globally active leaders through personalizing complex global issues, empowering proactive change-makers, and facilitating contextualized educational outreach.
I will begin by work with Rising Minds at the beginning of October as the Assistant Guatemala-based Director, and one of my priorities is to raise funds to support all materials, staff and administrative costs to execute the In School Health Training Program in the San Juan La Laguna Municipality for the upcoming 2016 school year. All trainings are designed to address community identified needs in a replicable, affordable and relevant manner.
Guatemala has the highest malnutrition rate in the western hemisphere and fourth highest in the world. Additionally, Guatemala has the highest rate of chronically malnourished children under 5 in Latin America (49%), and the highest infant mortality rate in Central America. Vitamin deficiencies cause a plethora of health issues, especially among young children and pregnant women. Rising Minds is working to alleviate this epidemic by hosting holistic health campaigns that cultivate awareness in communities where the majority of children suffer from chronic malnutrition. These campaigns equip families not only the education to motivate, but also the tools to actively improve their health and prevent the transmission of disease.
With this said, customizing trainings to address crucial health and nutritional concerns facing rural, indigenous communities around Lake Atitlan is of utmost importance. Our training curriculum is based on in-depth community profiles designed to specifically identify community deficits and needs. Programs are culturally sensitive and implement resources available in the local area so as to ensure replicability. Once a week our community health educators and volunteers provide hands-on, interactive lessons based on nutrition and illness prevention to upwards of 400 children between the ages of 4-14.. The health trainings cover several topics including: Disease Prevention, Nutrition, Emergency Response and CPR and are all delivered via hands-on, interactive lessons with a D.I.Y element which is affordable and sustainable.