Elderly Info

The food crisis in Guatemala is having a devastating effect on the elderly. Without enough to eat, many older people are becoming weak and malnourished, leaving them more vulnerable to illnesses that they cannot afford medical care for. They are unable to provide for even their most basic needs. In many cases, family members are unable to help as they struggle to feed themselves and their own children, leaving the elderly without any form of support and often living in heartbreaking conditions.

Please help us bring them the life-sustaining food and medical care that they so desperately need. General donations are used to ensure that we always have an adequate supply of food, medicine, and funds for meals, necessary medical treatment, and transportation. Monthly sponsorship would help feed one person, once a day for five days a week. Via blog and web album, we'll show you exactly where your aid is going and help you get to know the men and women whose lives you are changing.

If you would like to sponsor an elderly person for $35 a month, please click here and write "monthly sponsorship'' in the Other box. To make a one-time donation for medicine, rent, or other costs, please click here and enter "Elderly Care Program" in the Other box. Any questions can be directed to Amy at amy@mayanfamilies.org

Media on Mayan Families Elderly

Ancianos : Megan Gette + photos by Rob Bain, Nisa East, Rhett Hammerton and Hiroko Tanaka

Mayan Families- Ancianos Stories : Nisa East

Mayan Families Elderly Feeding Care Program : Rhett Hammerton

Facing Hunger: Elderly in Rural Guatemala

Dec 4, 2012

Gregoria Cosigua

(A-86) Status: Sponsored!
Needs: food, 3 single beds and mattresses or 1 double bed and 1 single bed, water filter, Onil stove, ulcer medication, pain medication, closet,
UPDATE: Dec 7, 2012: Gregoria is now sponsored for one year!
For more stories and photos of the ancianos in the Feeding Program, please consider purchasing a book compiled of our participants. All profits go to the Elderly. You can preview the book here.  

To help them with these needs, please click here.

Gregoria does not weave the tablecloths or shawls she's given, but embroiders the stitching for them, earning 75 cents per garment. 
Of their four daughters, one is married and therefore has a little money coming in. She and her husband run a store in a neighboring village, and give to the rest of the family what they can: there are five living in one room with three cots and two dressers inside it.
They want to know if Gregoria's husband is old enough to be in the Feeding program. He is 77, his whole body hurts and he can't work anymore. 
We don't have much time before we go, he says.
Gregoria's ulcer is so bad she vomits blood, and her nose bleeds. Her stomach hurts all day.
A year ago a doctor visited the village and prescribed her some pills that she can't afford anymore.
She holds her belly where she sits in the doorway. The daughters station themselves on the stairs up the hill like militia men, saying nothing, guarding their privacy.
Their roof is covered in beans they have picked to dry out in the sun. They will cook them in a tin pot over an open fire in dirty water they carried up the hill. 
Since the last earthquake, the couple is terrified their house, made of adobe, will collapse around them while they sleep. 

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