Program manager Merida Coj, Executive Director Anne Kraemer, Program Manager Yoli Juarez, and Board Member Felipa Mus at an appreciation lunch following the Board meeting.


Welcome to our End of Year update! 

We have so much to be thankful for as we head into Thanksgiving and the holiday season. 

Among the highlights in recent months was our first in-person Board retreat since the emergence of Covid-19! Board members from the US and Guatemala gathered in Tecpán to hear from our managers about some of our exciting progress and work to come. 

Read on to learn more about our newest board member, a wonderful Insight Trip, our amazing research team, and more. Also get the details about our Hidden Heroes fundraising campaign honoring our remarkable staff. And of course don't forget Giving Tuesday, the day of global giving, coming up next week on November 29! You can get a jump on the day and donate now to help build health equity in Guatemala.

We are forever grateful to you, our wonderful community, for your generosity and support!

Wishing you a healthy and peaceful holiday season.

With gratitude,

- Anne Kraemer, Executive Director



A mother hears her baby's heartbeat for the first time.

We recently held our second Insight Trip for supporters who are interested in a close-up look at our work. The group accompanied a midwife on prenatal visits in the rural community of Pamezul, where they witnessed mothers hearing their babies’ heartbeats for the first time. They visited our new lab, in which we will soon be testing HPV samples as part of our cervical cancer prevention work. They joined our nutrition technicians in the community of Pachichiac to learn how we work with caregivers to monitor and encourage their children's growth. Finally, the group had a chance to meet with families in communities outside Lake Atitlán to find out more about how we support children with complicated conditions and their families in our integrated complex care program. We are so grateful to the families who are willing to share their stories and graciously welcome us into their homes.

All Saints Day

It was a very busy few days that included a bonus stop at the spectacular All Saints Day Giant Kite Festival at the Santiago Cemetery.

For our team, it was a wonderful opportunity to welcome new friends into our community and to get fresh perspectives on our work. 

If you are interested in hearing about future Insight Trips, email us at



In this video, Executive Director Anne Kraemer launches our end of year fundraising campaign celebrating our hidden (s)heroes.

Don’t miss out on the opportunity for a 1:1 match from our stellar Board of Directors through midnight December 31!

Our goal is to raise a total of $120,000 to cover the rising costs of food and fuel and start 2023 strong!

WK Team

Click on the image for Anne's video update. 



We have two Boards – one in Guatemala and one in the US. Earlier this month, the boards came together at our headquarters in Tecpán for our first post-Covid in-person gathering. The day included presentations from all of our program managers; board members learned about everything from our latest research projects to what it takes to manage the complex logistics required to serve hundreds of remote villages. This was not only inspiring for board members, it was also a valuable opportunity for our managers to hone their presentation skills.

Sandy Sudweeks

Sandy shows what a tour of Guatemala did to her hiking shoes. 


We're excited to announce our new Board Member, Sandy Sudweeks!

She is a retired Professor of intercultural communication effectiveness based in Costa Mesa, California. She has worked with and studied international organizations and NGOs in Guatemala and Mexico. 

"A unique feature of Maya Health Alliance | Wuqu’ Kawoq is the leadership's strong belief in building an organization that can provide quality, evidence-based care to an extremely marginalized population through hiring and training indigenous staff that is committed to this mission. The leadership goal is to create a transparent, cooperative, culturally effective organization that can adapt and recreate itself to meet future needs. I am excited and hopeful that this type of international assistance, development and delivery of care will be the future for other organizations." - Sandy Sudweeks 



Pictured is Julio Sotz, our new male peer educator for sexual and reproductive health, at a class he led for members of the local police force.

Julio is focused on bringing male partners into family planning and reproductive health discussions by providing information and encouragement through workshops and one-on-one education sessions.

His sessions feature our new curriculum that spans physical, social, and emotional development from conception through the later years. We are delighted to have him on the team!



Glendy Batzibal from our Women’s Health team has earned her technical degree in Midwifery from Galileo University while continuing her work in the field providing family planning counseling and options. We appreciate the tremendous efforts of team members like Glendy who are dividing their time between learning new skills and providing high quality healthcare services in marginalized communities.

Dr. Gabriela Montenegro, Research Fellow in our Nutrition Program, has graduated from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Leadership Institute. The Academy is the world's largest organization of nutrition and dietetics practitioners, and the Leadership Academy is a comprehensive program to prepare individuals with leadership skills ranging from communication to project management to team building.



We were honored to be a finalist in two categories in the 2022 .Org Impact Awards: Health and Healing for our innovative Mobile Maternal Health Program supporting safe and healthy births; and Hunger and Poverty for our successful Family-Centered Nutrition Program.=5

The Awards, which celebrate nonprofits’ achievements in seven categories, received 947 entries from 68 countries around the world and named 35 finalists.


In PLOS Global Public Health, Rachel Hall-Clifford, a medical anthropologist and global health practitioner at Emory University, writes about collaborating with local midwives and Wuqu’ Kawoq | Maya Health Alliance to design a toolkit to support safer births in rural Guatemala.

"Co-design centers the ideas and strategies of the end-user communities and positions them as owners of the innovations developed, which improves sustainability because the community is invested in project outcomes."

Read: Can Co-Design Support Equity in Global Health?

In addition to this important work, which we continue to refine and expand, our Center for Indigenous Health Research has a growing number of significant research projects underway and scheduled to launch, including four National Institutes of Health RO1 grants.

The research focuses on critical areas such as finding ways to deliver personalized, culturally relevant information and feedback to help caregivers support their children's healthy development; examining the benefits of daily egg consumption on young children’s growth and development; and using artificial intelligence to better detect high-risk conditions for mothers and babies using data from portable Doppler ultrasounds.

We are so proud of this groundbreaking work!



We were well represented at the recent Festival de Flores in Antigua thanks to dedicated team members who worked well into the night to create a beautiful floral version of our Kawoq symbol.


Thank you so much for your ongoing support!

top ranked global giving

Maya Health Alliance | Wuqu' Kawoq
PO BOX 91  | Bethel, Vermont 05032-0091
513-393-9878 |

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