Sara and Ishbalanke's 2015 Family Update



Photo taken in 2015

Sara is as feisty and energetic as ever! She appears much happier and at ease than during any of our previous visits. Two years ago she had an operation for a hernia caused by caring for her disabled adult daughter, Ishbalanke. In order for her to have the operation, plans had to be made for the care of Ishbalanke. She was moved to a home approximately 3 hours away that provides private care for 80 people. Sara repeated over and over how happy Ishbalanke appeared to be.
In true Sara fashion, she has great plans for the future. She is a hoarder and so found it extremely upsetting when a group of volunteers came up to help with this work. But, because there is now a bit of room to move around, she realizes this is a bit better and has started painting the walls. This is a huge step forward for her. Her motivation is that she would like to bring Ishbalanke back to the house. She sees the situation as temporary and so is planning for the day when her daughter returns. Typical Sara! It is not possible for Sara to care for her daughter any more. We believe she knows this but still hangs onto the hope of having her return.
Sara expressed much appreciation to her donor for the money given to her each month to purchase food. She says it is sufficient and appreciates the ability to purchase her own food rather than taking what the Mayan Families office provides her. Her only medical issue right now is her eyesight. We hope to be able to send her to an eye doctor for help.
FOOTNOTE: A week after writing this, we learned of the sudden death of Sara’s daughter at her care home outside Antigua. Because Sara has no phone she was not aware of her daughter’s death but, when she came into the Mayan Families offices, she was calm. It was as if she knew it prior to being told. That would be Sara, an amazing lady. In Mayan tradition, Ishbalanke was buried right away. Sara was unable to be there for the ceremony but still went to Antigua to visit the cemetery. Our hearts go out to Sara at this time.

How to help Sara and Ishbalanke


The family currently needs:
Medical $200 for trip to Guatemala City for eye exam
Food $144 - 100 lb of black beans

If you would like to help this family, we have two payment options available:

Donate online:
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Please note that we have charitable status and can issue you an official tax receipt for your kind donation.

A special lady we care deeply about
A special lady we care deeply about
Receiving a blanket from a donor and other items
Receiving a blanket from a donor and other items
Having fun, as always with this feisty lady!
Having fun, as always with this feisty lady!
Leigh greeting Sara
Leigh greeting Sara
Our Sara
Our Sara
Saying a fond farewell
Saying a fond farewell
Receiving food
Receiving food
Sara showing us how I apparently stepped on a tree she had growing in her house during our last visit
Sara showing us how I apparently stepped on a tree she had growing in her house during our last visit
Relating huge thanks for the gifts
Relating huge thanks for the gifts

If you are interested in a humanitarian holiday


Stove Project
-2 week project in Guatemala in Spring 2017
-installing at least 25 fuel-efficient and vented concrete block stoves
-ideal for family “teams” (mother/daughter, husband/wife)
-must be 18 yrs or older
-2 days sightseeing in Panajachel and Antigua
-guided by members of Mayan Families Canada and Guatemala
-total number of volunteers being accepted - 12
-contact us at:   info@mayanfamiliescanada.org

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