Juanita Cabrera Lopez
With the sponsorship of the International Mayan League, Juanita helped to conduct outreach to Indigenous nations, human rights and environmental organizations, and organized Guatemalan and Mexican Indigenous leaders and communities affected by extractive industry projects. She also identified allies who were working on safeguarding their community’s rights.
Juanita also helped to strengthen the ties between the Mayan Parliament (Parlamento Maya) and Pixan Ixim. The collaboration between the two institutions focused on building a strategy for the self-determination of the Mayan peoples, including joint planning for the summer 2015, Summit of Indigenous Nations. It also included support for the building of alliances between the Gobierno Plurinacional and the Consejo Maya Mam. Juanita assisted in developing an agenda that would take into account the needs and rights of the Indigenous leaders in Guatemala and strengthen links with the immigrant community in the US.
Leobardo Ambrocio Ajtalam
Under the sponsorship of Cultural Survival, Leobardo participated in many social outreach projects, mainly through speaking out about social justice, migrant, labor, and human rights, and corruption in Guatemala through radio shows, conferences, and meetings. At Columbia University, he also gave a lecture on immigration and social justice for Latin American human rights activists. Leobardo also assisted in planning and participated in multiple protests against corruption in Guatemala that drew on supporters from the New York Guatemalan community as well as other supporters.
Under the sponsorship of Comunidad Maya Pixan Ixim, Luis focused on promoting the implementation of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. He promoted this international standard through public speaking tours that included a Panel Discussion on the Genocide in Guatemala at the University of Nebraska at Omaha, and the Creighton University’s Round Table Discussion with Faculty and Students. Luis also organized an event between the Omaha Nation and the Mayan Nation in order to publicize the strengthening of the bilateral relationship between the two peoples. He also helped to create the Parlamento Maya USA which will help support the Snuq Jolom Konob radio station by making it an internet based radio station since it was taken off the air and closed down by the mayor of Santa Eulalia, Huehuetenango, Guatemala.
By way of the social justice collective La Comunidad Ixim in Los Angeles, Zully created a space dedicated for Mayan people to reflect, share, and heal from the experiences they have confronted as a community. Through a series of dialogue-based workshops, participants from multiple Guatemalan regions discussed topics surrounding their ancestors’ stories, genocide, human rights, movement building, migration stories, and identity. The primary goal of these workshops was information sharing, and furthering the children’s coloring and activity book that the collective began four years ago. This coloring and activity book is multilingual (English, Spanish, and multiple Mayan languages) and focuses on the experiences of a Mayan child raised within Los Angeles.
With the support of Inglés en Acción, Catarina completed multiple outreach activities and projects. She coordinated panelists and invited immigrants from the community to attend a forum focusing on DACA/DAPA and Driver Licenses. In May she protested for a dignified work salary for undocumented immigrants. In her Driver’s License campaign, she called for reforms to driver’s license laws to allow for undocumented immigrants in Rhode Island to obtain licenses which would greatly improve their socio-economic levels, security, and health of their families. She also campaigned for the new licensing legislation by helping the community to call their House Representatives to encourage them to vote in favor of the licensing bill.
Catarina also volunteered her time at the Mayan Parliament USA where she was the Assistant Accounting Administrator and Coordinator for events and meetings. As part of the Mayan Parliament USA, she travelled to Nebraska for a week long Mayan Parliament Conference where different presentations and meeting took place which aimed at strengthening the bonds between the Pixam Ixim, the International Mayan League, and the Omaha Nation.
Concepcion Santay Gomez
With the support of Alcaldia Indigena de Cotzal, Santay conducted a speaking tour in Los Angeles and visited four universities (University of Southern California, California State University-Northridge, California State University-Los Angeles, and Scripps College), and three local community organizations focused on environmental, Indigenous, and human rights. Santay also spoke live on the Maya Radio program Contacto Ancestral. The target audiences of the tour included students, professors, and those community members interested in environmental, social justice, Indigenous, and human rights issues.
Rogelia was named a Visiting Scholar for the academic year at Boston College where she focused on mapping the Guatemalan communities within Boston, and their participation in migrant organizations. Over the next few months, Rogelia established communication with numerous organizations which had Guatemalan community members participation.
She also gave a lecture to art history students at Boston College on the history of the Guatemalan civil war and presented her proposal for reconstructing historical memory through a Community Mural Workshop. Unfortunately, due to personal reasons, Rogelia was unable to complete the second half of her project.
Under the sponsorship of the Alliance for Guatemalan Organizations, Josefina completed social outreach projects such as participating in a Celebration of Homeland parade where they used their float to share and promote their cultural values and community work. She also participated in a protest against Monsanto because of a law that would threaten traditional farmers’ seeds. Josefina assisted in other activities such as holding a vigil for the Respect of Life in Guatemala, and by hosting such speakers as Lolita Chavez who spoke at various events on the Mayan struggle to protect their land rights and resources. Josefina also visited the Guatemalan Consulate General in Texas with a delegation to discuss freedom of expression within Guatemalan Indigenous communities.