District Humanitarian Trip to Guatemala
The group from our Rotary District, which included members of our Club, saw firsthand the impact of their efforts in Guatemala. The first project the Rotarians visited was an elementary school in a rural village where they saw the recipients of the aid Rotary provided. The Guatemala literacy project is a partnership between North American and Guatemalan Rotary clubs. "Our mission is to make sure all kids have access to traditional and digital literacy."  Rotarians were welcomed with a procession of the children singing and dancing and performing a wonderful play that brought tears to the Rotarians' eyes. "The kids were wonderful and they're smiles so rewarding" exclaimed an observer.

Next, the Rotarians left for Hope Heaven, a sustainable wheelchair program for men and women of all ages. They visited a factory where all the workers are disabled. They all have special needs. The factory was designed for them to work in the production of these wheelchairs. They study the needs of each individual in order to make the proper chair. After some time, these chairs can be passed on and recycled for someone elses' use. The Rotary Club supported this project for two reasons. First because we believe in the work they do and the need for it and second for the way that they work. Hope Heaven has been functioning for more than seven years. They have always worked with the people with scarce resources that are required for the chairs. Many recipients travel up to eight hours by bus to get their chairs.
An important aspect of the trip was to engage in cultural events including going to Tikal, an ancient Mayan ruin. They also went to San Lucas where the community has witnessed severe deforestation and the people live in extremely harsh conditions. Here Rotarians saw the eco stoves they provided and helped build. These stoves are supporting a better life for the people because they allow the smoke to go up the vent and outside.

The Rotarians also visited a mountain village where they are building a new water treatment and sewage plant. They visited a local school where they gave school supplies and enjoyed watching native folk dancing. The last project the Rotarians visited was an intercity program that takes kids off the streets, protecting them from the worst nightmares of urban life. These are children that could be future leaders of their community.