Wuqu’ Kawoq has collaborated on educational opportunities for Guatemalan midwives for years, and in January of 2011 we began a pilot program to expand our model to include education for other women in our communities as well. The pilot program is a series of five themed classes on sexual health every two weeks for a total of ten weeks. The themes include: getting to know one’s body (essentially a women’s anatomy class), sexually transmitted infections (STI) and HIV/AIDS, cervical cancer and menopause, family planning and contraception, and the final class is a review of all of the themes and a graduation with diplomas.
In addition providing education to the women, we encourage them to attend our monthly women's clinics where we provide pelvic/papanicolaou exams, STI testing and treatment, as well as contraception (birth control pills and injections) free of charge to each of our patients.
We started our first round of classes with 3 groups of women, ranging in size from 7 to 18 students, in Santiago and San Pedro, Sacatepéquez. In the past month we have completed these classes and successfully graduated 27 students. These classes were extremely successful in terms of participant reception as well as attendance. We will continue to offer these classes and expand them to other communities!
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