Aguas Calientes (Guatemala)
Aguas Calientes is a tiny village in the Department of Chimaltenengo, Guatemala and the determination of the women there is quite a wonderful success story. MayaWorks helped the women of Aguas Calientes form a weaving co-op several years ago and placed their first order, asking eight women to weave 12 banners each. All 96 banners were woven perfectly and MayaWorks expanded their relationship with this group of women.
Soon after the first order was produced, a discussion about literacy ensued. Because the women travel to Chimaltenango to buy their thread, they were concerned that they could not communicate well with the vendors and that they could not read the signs on the buses. There were also communication barriers with their children’s teachers and doctors because the women did not speak Spanish. This was the beginning of the literacy program. These women have made it a priority to learn Spanish, dedicating two afternoons a week to studying with a teacher who is paid by MayaWorks. The next time MayaWorks came to the village, there was a silo, on the following visit there was light and now there is a tienda with a refrigerator.