Water tower in Santa Anita

Community

We are a Mayan community: mum, k'iche', sipakapense, and others, and although the language spoken communally is Spanish, many of us also speak in our native tongues.

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Santa Anita la Unión is an agrarian community located near the municipality ...

of Colomba Costa Cuca, department of Quetzaltenago, Guatemala.  Our 32 families produce organic coffee and bananas that are sold on the local and international market.  When we arrived on the finca in 1998 there did not exist what you will see today; it was an abandoned plantation with overgrown coffee plants and few usable buildings.  Through support from the European Union, the Spanish Red Cross and other institutions, we have been able to construct concrete houses for each of our members, a day care center, an elementary school, a kitchen and dining room for eco-tourism, a basketball/soccer court in the center of the community, and infrastructure like plumbing and electricity.

We are a Mayan community: mum, k'iche', sipakapense, and others, and although the language spoken communally is Spanish, many of us also speak in our native tongues.  Our Mayan heritage is very present in the community.  Our work is the cultivation of organic coffee and bananas and although we have had the luck to meet friends such as the roasters Just Coffee and Dean's Beans, and the importer Cooperative Coffees, it is still difficult to make ends meet.  Plantation workers in Guatemala make between 25 and 35 quetzales ($3.25 and $4.50) a day and for this reason, members of our community sometimes choose to migrate to other regions, national and international, to find work.

Our Vision: Growing up, most of us never had access to a good education; many of us never completed elementary school.  Now, after the war, our vision is to provide our children with an excellent education so that they may be able to pursue a profession and someday return to benefit their people.  Although we may never be able to escape a life of low-paying manual labor, our children will now have the opportunity to choose what kind of life they would like to live.  In pursuing this goal, we have constructed three schools in the community:  a preschool/daycare center, elementary school, and middle school.  Every child of age studies, and children from the surrounding fincas are also educated here.

If you would like to learn more about the people who live in Santa Anita la Unión, read some of their stories:

Leticia Roblero Quiquiuij

Doña Mari Alvarado

Julio Laines Perez

Semana Santa Girls from Santa Anita Soccer team - Santa Anita Birthday Party - Santa Anita
Celebrating Semana Santa
Sisters posing
Santa Anita's graduating class
Birthday cake