WHAT YOU NEED TO KOW
"The Pastoral Social – Cáritas, Diócesis de La Verapaz" is an institution of the Catholic Church which promotes and helps with the well-being and quality of life of those most in need within the region of Alta Verapaz in Guatemala.
"The Pablo Requena Foundation" will support one of their projects called "Entre Amigos" aiding vulnerable groups in this region.
The “Entre Amigos” project
"Entre Amigos" main aim is to support families living with HIV. It assists those affected to access the right treatment and support so they can enjoy a long and fulfilling life.
At the moment there are 245 men, women, boys and girls from the region Alta Verapaz registered for the project. They need help with finding the essential food and nutrition, medicine and access to the hospital with the necessary facilities.
It is important to know that the “Pastoral Social-Cáritas” supports everyone who is in need and wants to be a member of their group. They coordinate with non-catholics, the LGBTQ+ community and people with different social and economic status.
Families affected by HIV – What are the risks?
People with HIV are extremely vulnerable due to being ignored, discriminated against and rejected by society.
They are at a very high risk of many opportunistic diseases if they don’t receive the correct anti-retroviral treatment (ART) or access proper nutrition.
In Guatemala, due to the high cost of antiretroviral treatment it can only be purchased by the Ministry of Health and Social Assistance or by people with high economic resources. Poverty and lack of medical care access is one of the fundamental reasons for the dissemination of opportunistic diseases in HIV carriers.
Issues currently affecting those vulnerable groups in Guatemala
Poverty; 29.9% of the population are living under extreme poverty (UNDP, 2020).
The COVID-19 pandemic could increase the extreme poverty in Guatemala.
91% of the population of the department of Alta Verapaz was affected by the impact of storms Eta and Iota.