Support literacy and learning for 1,900 Maya youth

by Limitless Horizons Ixil
Apr 25, 2014

An Oasis of Learning

Hard at work on homework!
Hard at work on homework!

The following is a postcard from Lydia Sorensen, GlobalGiving's In-the-Field Representative in Guatemala, about her recent visit to Limitless Horizons Ixil

Walking into the Saber Sin Límites Community Library in Chajul, we are immediately greeted with hearty “buenos dias” by a giggling trio of kids clutching library cards. Behind them Marilu (one of the three librarians, all of whom are former scholarship recipients) is working with an older group of girls on a school project. All heads are bent together over the table as they carefully copy out a quote on morales (morals) unto a piece of yellow posterboard. The Chajul library isn’t just a place for children and students though, the whole community is able to take advantage of the safe and quiet space for learning.

Places like the library are scarce not just in Chajul but in Guatemala as a whole (the Chajul library is the only one in the Ixil triangle). Marilu explains that they encourage the children and the community to take ownership of the library and feel proud of it. Users receive a library card (and through it access to the library) for only 7 Quetzales a year (less than one US Dollar). They come to the library to do research or school projects (most live in houses that consist of only one room and are often filled with as many as fourteen or fifteen other families members), to use the free internet (almost none have internet at home), read a book, or participate in one of the library’s many programs. One such program is the history story program, where elders in the community to come and tell stories from their childhood (it’s very well attended).

Two young girls in traditional Maya dress (red cortes and blue huipiles) sit at a table in the children’s corner looking over a picture book while taking a break from homework. Outside its market day and the streets are noisy with people selling their products. Inside the Saber Sin Limites Library however the atmosphere is peaceful as Marilu works with the older students to put the finishing touches on their poster before school and boys quietly draw in the back room, an oasis of reading and exploring in the hectic town of Chajul.

Marilu helping with a presentation
Marilu helping with a presentation

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Organization Information

Limitless Horizons Ixil

Location: San Gaspar Chajul, El Quiche - Guatemala
Website: http:/​/​
Project Leader:
Marissa Loterina
Chajul, Quiche Guatemala
$30,189 raised of $40,000 goal
218 donations
$9,811 to go
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