Mercy Corps & WINGS – Guatemala

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Malnutrition is a common affliction in Guatemala; roughly half of children under the age of 5 are chronically undernourished. In indigenous areas, the number is much higher – 69 percent of children under the age of 5 chronically undernourished. As indicated by the statistics, indigenous women and children are the most vulnerable to malnutrition and subsequent poor health. Limited healthcare also impacts indigenous womens' access to family planning. Lack of family planning resources coupled with malnutrition can lead to higher infant mortality rates in the region.

OMPT delivered training and equipment to two organizations working in Alta Verapaz Guatemala: Mercy Crops and WINGS with ten staff members from each organization attended. Staff from Mercy Corps are working on the USAID-funded PROCOMIDA project and WINGS work with indigenous Mayan communities to promote family planning. Over four days, they received training on video production as well as dissemination using cordless video projectors.

Based on the quality of the video content created by the participants as well as the before and after surveys, initial analysis of the workshop shows that it exceeded expectations. Many participants arrived at the workshop with little experience or confidence in their ability to produce video content and all left expressing significant improvement and confidence in their ability to executive video projects as well as enthusiasm for applying the intervention to their work.

Each organization produced a planning calendar to execute more videos over the next 3-6 months. Mercy Corps’ PROCOMIDA project has only eight more months before closing so they will pilot the use of video and cordless projectors at this time for potential expansion into new programs. WINGS plans to use the videos extensively in their outreach to families and communities. They will pilot the intervention with a goal to demonstrate efficacy and scale up.

Sustainability will be bolstered by OMPT and its Local Video Trainers’ follow-up support. Both Local Video Trainers will be available to serve as volunteers or consultants when needed by the organizations. OMPT will also follow up monthly to track any needs of the organizations as they integrate video into their interventions.

OMPT also took an interview of Mercy Corps Deputy Country Director Jay Jackson discussing the conditions they face in Guatemala and how OMPT’s technology will be of benefit.

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  • Discipline: Hygiene, Nutrition & Family Planning
  • Location: Coban, Guatemala
  • Partner: Mercy Corps & WINGS
  • Project Year: 2014