Answering the call to feed their neighbors, the Disciples of the Good Shepherd have taken the lead in coordinating Ixim's response to COVID-19 in Huehuetenango. In all five of their parishes, Disciples have identified, interviewed, and helped families in need. Families receive about $400 of staple foods per month, each month from July through September. The impact of this program on their communities, and on the Disciples themselves, has brought joy to a time filled with concern and anxiety.
This joy was palpable in a recent conversation with Sister Ramona. She expressed the gratitude of all the Disciples to the benefactors of the Good Shepherd Assistance Program and to their sponsors who enable the Disciples to serve their community. Faced with the difficulties of this moment, the Disciples are given purpose by being able to help those most in need. Not only have the Disciples received the reciprocal joy of seeing others grateful for the assistance, their hearts have been filled by being able to respond to the challenges their communities are facing.
Here are examples of some of the families helped in communities across Huehuetenango.
- An elderly grandmother living with her ten year-old grandson who survives by washing clothes for others in the community. She was left without work due to the pandemic with no other way to earn money.
- A single mother with two children and an elderly mother. One of the children has diabetes and fell into a coma for which the the family has a large debt. The mother lost her job as a cleaning woman. The grandmother is unable to work due to severe arthritis.
- An elderly woman who undergoes dialysis treatments but would have been unable to do so as her husband is unable to work.
- A family of five with one child with disabilities who requires special medicines and whose parents have lost work.
- A widower who is blind and has no family to assist her. A neighbor had been taking food to her once per day during the pandemic.
As the pandemic begins to stretch into the fall, Ixim and the Disciples will continue to look for ways to help those most vulnerable to the health and economic effects of COVID-19 in Huehuetenango.
If you'd like to be part of our response, sign up for our mailing list here: https://ixim.org/news-events/mailing-list.html
You can also make a donation at the link below. All donations from this link will support the Good Shepherd Assistance Program directly.