BENEFITING: Nourish International
Chapters: UCLA and UCSC
Partner Organization: ByoEarth
Nourish International’s UCLA and UCSC chapters are returning to Guatemala for a second year of partnership with ByoEarth to build shops and organic gardens, as well as provide training classes to increase income in rural communities, empower women, and improve the nutrition of children during a critical stage in their development.
A team of students from UCLA and UCSC will travel to Guatemala over the summer for a six-week internship. They will be responsible for constructing small shops in 10 rural villages where women will sell organic vegetables and herbs. These local women will get their produce from the plant nurseries that were built last year during part one of the project. Additionally, we plan to lead classes in accounting, marketing, and business management so that the women can continue to be autonomous and profitable after we leave.
Together with ByoEarth, we will identify families with children between the ages of 2 and 5, who are most at risk for malnutrition, and build gardens with vegetables and fruits for them. We will offer health and cooking classes for the parents to learn how to make nutritious meals with the plants that they grow.
Our partner nonprofit, ByoEarth, will check up with the women and families we work with regularly to determine their success and provide additional support. Our goal during this trip is threefold: to empower women through enabling them to run small businesses; to increase income within the villages in which we work through these women-run small businesses; and to improve health, especially in young children, to combat the effects of malnutrition.
We are in our second year of partnership with ByoEarth, a Guatemalan-run nonprofit focused on health and sustainability for the purpose of improving the lives of impoverished communities. Last summer, Nourish International successfully finished part one of the project with ByoEarth. Throughout the 8 weeks spent in Guatemala last summer, the UCLA-UCSC team built three greenhouses in three different locations: 1) Sumpango, Sacatepequez 2) San Bartolo, Sacatepequez and 3) Junkabalito, Guatemala City. After the greenhouses were completed, the teams planted herbs and lead workshops on empowerment, growing herbs, and basic business skills. This project allowed the team to create a strong relationship with the people in those communities as well as with ByoEarth.