Every day, two women die in Guatemala giving birth. Sadly, these deaths are from largely preventable and easily treated conditions.
Guatemala has a population of 15 million people, half are under age 20. The majority of the population is indigenous and lives on less than $2 USD per day.
People living in remote rural villages in Guatemala are Maya. Most speak only one of 20 Mayan languages, not Spanish. They struggle against extreme poverty, malnutrition, discrimination, and high maternal mortality. The closest hospital or clinic is 2 hours walk for most villagers.
If they are lucky enough to reach a hospital, probably on the back of a pick up truck on an unpaved road, and they cannot speak Spanish, they risk being left to die.
There is a need for qualified medically-trained midwives in the indigenous areas of Guatemala.
Staff, students, and instructors of "Corazón del Agua" midwife school in Guatemala City
The education facility "Asociación Corazón del Agua", operating in association with Galileo University, graduated 15 midwives in November 2016, each graduate earning a technical degree after completing a 3-year split session course (2 months in-school education and 1 month practicum with their "sponsoring midwife" in the rural field). A new class of 12 students began their 3-year education in July 2016 and will graduate in November 2019.
Midwives (comadronas) are trusted members of Mayan society. They deliver and assist at births but have no medical training. However, a midwife with 3 years of medical training, equipped with proper diagnostic tools and supplies, can save lives in Guatemala.