Skills Training for Single Moms in Guatemala City

by Institute for Overcoming Urban Misery (ISMU)

Donating to this campaign helps single women in Guatemala City provide for their families! Your generous support has been an important part of ISMU’s ability to provide workshops for women artisans, training over 70 women in handicrafts that generate income.

Workshops are not just about handicrafts. Women also learn about their rights and resources, practice leadership skills, and strengthen community ties.

 The products they make, like soap and cloth and jewelry, are sold cooperatively at places like The Store of Solidarity Market at the Casa Cervantes Cultural Center and the local market. Skills in marketing and leadership enhance the impact of these entrepreneurs.

 Thank you for your support!

Starting October 12, for a limited time, GlobalGiving will be matching donations for this project! Donate and maximize your impact!

Thanks to your support, ISMU continues to strengthen marginalized urban areas of Guatemala City by educating and empowering women and children. Recent program activities include:

  • Workshops have taught women new skills, thus the ability to increase their income and provide for their families.  These workshops include: creating products out of recycled newspaper  and plastic, making eco-friendly home and beauty products,  and crocheting.       
  • ISMU’s microfinance program has directly benefited 63 women and 3 men with 140 loans, supporting several communities. By helping them manage their small businesses, community members are able to invest in diverse income-generating businesses such as traditional candy making, flower arrangements, selling of local food, baking, and beauty product distribution, among others.

 By donating to ISMU you are ensuring more women and children can benefit from this program.

 Thank you for your support.

With your support, ISMU continues to focus its efforts on strengthening marginalized urban areas of Guatemala City by providing community members with job training workshops.

Our most recent update reports on job training workshops that provide skills to participants. These are skills they can do at home to earn an income with. ISMU facilitated workshops on environmentally friendly cleaning products that are made out of natural plants. With the skills gained from this workshop, women will be able to generate an income from the production and sales of these cleaning products.

ISMU’s microfinance program, Communal Loan Funds, is proving to be a great success. The microfinance program is currently working in 16 different communities and is benefiting 70 people. Community members are able to invest in income generating projects of their choice, such as making and selling traditional foods, pig raising, tailoring clothes, and more.

Not only does ISMU empower adults, they also show great support to the urban youth. Providing scholarships to impoverished children is a central part of ISMU’s work toward urban poverty alleviation. ISMU granted scholarships to 183 students that are facing economic and social problems in the completion of their studies. With the support of the scholarships, students are able to continue their education. Several of the local youths who have graduated, are now tutoring other students in their own communities.

By donating to ISMU you are ensuring more women can benefit from this program.

Thank you for your support.

On Tuesday, March 16, all donations up to $1,000 per donor, per project will be matched. Donate on Tuesday, March 16, 2010, and maximize your gift. International Women's Day was this week, and to celebrate amazing and strong women and girls, we are pleased to report handicraft training has been successful and on target. From our latest report, ISMU staff trained 70 women in the production of handicrafts made out of recycled materials. The women participating in the training also learned business and leadership skills in order to replicate these workshops in their own communities and train even more women interested in handicraft training. Additionally, 4 teachers facilitated a series of workshops on arts and crafts for families living in extreme poverty. The workshops taught participants how to create marketable eco-friendly products. Products included wallets made out of plastic bags, candleholders made out of juice cans, jewelry accessories made out of natural seeds, and coin purses using recycled plastic. Through ISMU’s connections to fair trade outlets in Guatemala City (including a cultural center and a museum gift shop selling fair trade artisan products), the participants are able to sell their handicrafts at fair prices.

So far, thanks to your support, this project has been able to carry out 3 training workshops on the administration of small projects, which was attended by over 50 women.

Currently ISMU is training 5 handicraft teachers and 6 monitors (community tutors) and 4 women as both teacher and monitor. ISMU facilitated training workshops in recycled-product handiwork as well as educational awareness workshops on sexual transmitted diseases (STD) prevention and reproductive rights.

The handicrafts production is also going well. ISMU has received several offers from organizations to sell their products, including a center supporting fair trade traditional artisan products and The Ixel Museum in Guatemala City (they have a shop selling high-quality artisan products). The Museum has ordered Christmas-themed baskets made out of recycled paper from the ISMU members. Additionally, a florist shop has requested a high volume of plant containers and vases constructed out of recycled plastics.


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Organization Information

Institute for Overcoming Urban Misery (ISMU)

Location: San Francisco, California - USA
Website: http:/​/​​ismuhtml
Project Leader:
Gillian Wilson
IDEX Latin America Program Director
San Francisco, CA United States

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This project is no longer accepting donations.

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