Saturday, March 26, 2011

Family of 6 in need of help.

Family of 6 Need Help Overcoming Hardship

Marta, who can walk now with the crutches
borrowed from Mayan Families.
8 months ago, about the same time that 40 year old Marta gave birth to her fourth child, she discovered a lump growing close to her left knee. She and her husband, Jose, struggle to support their family on the small salary Jose earns working in the fields as a day laborer.  He earns about $4.50 per day, but can only find work about once a week in their rural town in Chimaltenango.  Because it is a constant struggle simply to buy the most basic necessities, Marta went several months without medical care, even though the lump became painful, and continued to grow. The pain got stronger and stronger, until some days she was unable to walk. When she couldn't put off seeing a doctor any longer, Marta came to Mayan Families for help.  We sent her to a doctor who determined that it would take an operation to remove the lump in her knee, at a cost of $300.  Because Marta had such pain and trouble walking and Marta and Jose would have to make the several-hour trip home in the back of a pickup truck, we couldn't send them home to wait for donations to cover the operation, and the doctor removed the lump right away. Thankfully, biopsies determined that the lump was benign, so Marta's knee problems should be over.

Marta and Jose
The cost of transportation for Marta and her husband, as well as food and lodging for the time that they had to stay in Pana because Marta was unable to travel back to Chimaltenango, totaled $270, which Marta and Jose will not be able to pay.  The surgery and follow up care have cost Jose precious days of work, because for a while Marta was not able to walk unassisted, much less care for the baby or her other children without his help.  The family, which never had enough to eat before, is now in an even more desperate situation.  Until this point, they have managed to keep their oldest three children in elementary school, but their school costs are an even bigger burden during this difficult time, and even before this incident Marta and Jose didn't know how they would pay for middle school, which has a tuition in addition to books, uniforms, and fees.  At this point it is clear that the kids will need sponsors to continue their educations.

If you are interested in helping the children--10 year old Ashley Mishel, who is in 4th grade, Alan Manuel, who is in 2nd grade, or Maykeline Celeste, who is in preschool--continue in school, you can email christine[at]mayanfamilies[dot]org for more information about sponsorship.

The family's most urgent need right now, though, is help with food and the costs of transportation for follow up appointments and lodging in Panajachel, because they live too far away to make the round trip in one day.  Teresa and Jose have told us that they would like to come and live in Pana, because there just isn't enough work for Jose in the tiny village where they live.  He would like the opportunity to provide for his family rather than rely on outside help, but they simply don't have the capital to move out of their two room house (1 bedroom and a small kitchen) in Chimaltenango and come to Pana.  To make a donation to help Teresa, Jose and their kids, please go to Donate Now, and designate your gift for FA122.

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