This project brings the many benefits of fruit trees to vulnerable low-income children and their families. We plant orchards at schools and family homes in indigenous Mayan villages along the Rio Dulce River of Guatemala, where most live in extreme poverty and chronic malnutrition is among the highest in the world. Help us provide long-term, sustainable nourishment for kids' growing bodies and minds as well as income for their families and support for this environmentally fragile region!
Child malnutrition in Guatemala is a serious issue and rural areas like Rio Dulce are hit especially hard. Guatemala has the 3rd highest rate of stunting caused by chronic malnutrition in the world and over a 3rd of child deaths are caused by undernutrition. There is an over-dependence on packaged, nutrient-poor foods and a steep decline in traditional food growing practices. Rio Dulce is in ever-increasing danger from the effects of climate change including severe erosion and depleted soils.
Fruit trees allow local villagers to gain the food-growing skills needed to feed their families and are a sustainable source of nutrition for a balanced diet. Harvests aid schools in self-sufficiency by supplying produce for school meals. The trees sent home with families add fresh, free fruit for home-cooked meals, as well as lessen the economic burden on families in poverty by reducing grocery bills and creating opportunities to earn extra income through the sale of surplus harvests.
Fruit trees provide a long-term, inexpensive, and sustainable solution to multiple urgent needs in Rio Dulce. As the trees grow to maturity, these communities will be enriched by their food forests with fresh fruit to balance their diets and harvests to sell. Mature trees prevent erosion along these fragile riparian areas, increase biodiversity, provide nutritious food and fight climate change. For generations, the vulnerable families served by Casa Guatemala will benefit from these fruit trees.
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