Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Single Mom has nowhere to turn after sister's death.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Angela Lopez Mendez is a 34 year old mother of three, and she's going through a family crisis.  Though she isn't divorced, her husband is living with another woman (a not-uncommon occurrence in Guatemala, where people often can't afford the cost of a divorce).  Because he earns more money than she does, the authorities have decided that her two older children, Erick (15), and Gloria (8), should live with their father until she can get on her feet.  Angela's youngest daughter, Merlyn (5), is still with her.

Angela and Merlyn were living with Angela's sister, Elyda, in a home with Elyda's husband's extended family.  Sadly, Elyda passed away a few weeks ago as a result of complications from a badly botched surgery.  She was only 30 years old.  While Elyda was in the hospital, Angela was by her side constantly.  She is heartbroken over her sister's death.  In addition to a devastating emotional blow, Elyda's death also meant the end of Angela's living arrangement (as is customary, she moved out after her sister passed away).  She and Merlyn are now living in a single rented room, for which they must pay Q250/month. She and Merlyn share one bed, and their diet is usually limited to tortilla and a few eggs, which they cook in the bedroom.

Angela had been trying to establish herself in order to get her children back, working as a domestic and earning a small but respectable Q500/month salary.  But her life has been derailed by her sister's illness and death.  She's still reeling from this tragedy, and heartbroken over losing custody of her two older children.  Angela will need some help to get back on track, keep Merlyn fed and sheltered, and make sure that she can start school next year.  With a little support, it could even be possible for Angela's other daughter, 8 year old Gloria, to come home to her mother (Gloria wants to live with Angela, but won't be allowed to until Angela's situation stabilizes). 

Food/Rent Support: A monthly gift or a one time donation of any size would help fill the family's most immediate needs--food and shelter.  To make a one-time donation, click here.  Scroll down to the box marked "Family Aid" and enter the amount of your donation.  Under "Family Name," write FA63.  You can specify that your donation be used for food or rent specifically in the "Extra Notes" box.  To make a monthly gift, go to Donate Monthly and enter your donation under 'other program,' including "FA63" in the description.

School Sponsorship: To Sponsor Merlyn in school next year, click here and write #1573, in the box marked "Desc" under "Other Programs." Enter the monthly amount as $15. To read more about our school sponsorship pr

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