What We Do

Nutrition Programs

Nutrition Programs – According to the World Food Programme, 47 percent of children in Guatemala suffer from chronic malnutrition, which is the highest rate in all of Latin America and the Caribbean and one of the highest rates in the world. Over the years, Mission Guatemala has worked to help combat this through our nutrition programs, which are organized with community collaboration.

  • Full-Time Nutrition Centers – Mission Guatemala operates two nutrition centers in the San Andrés Semetabaj area. One is located in the community of Nueva Esperanza, and for the last 6 years has provided a lunch to the 80 students in the community's public elementary school. The other is at the Escuela Kikoten elementary school in San Andrés Semetebaj, where the school's 120 students receive a hearty snack each morning.
  • "Como Saludable Wednesday" Lunch Program – Through our “Como Saludable” (Eat Healthy) program, 781 students in 7 rural public elementary schools receive a hearty and nutritious meal once a week, with Mission Guatemala providing the ingredients and supervision, and the parents and teachers from the community cooking and serving the meals.
  •  "Niños Chispudos" Early Childhood Nutrition Program – While our full-time nutrition centers and Wednesday lunch programs help school-aged children, they do not address malnutrition in children who are not yet old enough to attend school. During a child’s critical early years of development, the effects of malnutrition can be especially devastating, leading to stunting, anemia, and chronic infections and sickness. For this reason, Mission Guatemala coordinates the "Niños Chispudos" (Kids With Spark) Early Childhood Nutrition Program which utilizes the Chispuditos® food product. Chispuditos® is a soy/corn based atol, or porridge, developed by The Mathile Institute in order to provide a daily nutritional supplement for children in Guatemala. Our "Niños Chispudos" program is open to all mothers with children aged 6 months to 6 years old, and provides Chispuditos® as well as free medical care for their children at Mission Guatemala's medical clinics. In addition, any young children suffering from malnutrition who are treated in our clinic are referred by the doctor to the "Niños Chispudos" program.