Organization for the Development of the Indigenous Maya
ODIM Guatemala is an organization working with indigenous Maya on the shores of Lake Atitlan providing competent and caring solutions to pressing health and health education needs in the villages of San Juan and San Pablo La Laguna. Our services are based on our:
*Two family medicine clinics
*Four community health and education programs
*Volunteer programs in which foreigners (mostly from the USA) serve in medical, dental and construction teams.
Clinic services include: family medicine, dental clinic, pharmacy, laboratory, counselling and family planning. The clinics are staffed by a local doctor and 3 nurses. Our services are provided in Tz’utujil (the local language) or Spanish - whichever the patient is more comfortable with.
Our four Community Health and Education Programs (CHEPs) are run using a system of local community health workers in the areas of diabetes, adolescent health, school scholarship/tutoring for children and our flagship Healthy Mommy & Me maternal and infant nutrition program which is designed to eliminate malnutrition in our two communities.
ODIM Guatemala employs 40 local persons and a few foreigners who work as a team to make a profound difference in these communities year-round. We invest heavily in the training and development of our local staff in order to offer the best care possible to our communities.
The towns: San Juan and San Pablo la Laguna are rural municipalities surrounding the scenic Lake Atitlán. The people of San Juan have benefited both from the income of local coffee production and tourism, which has nurtured businesses that offer hand-woven textiles, painted art, and other services to visitors. Despite these sources of income, half the town lives in poverty; ten percent live in extreme poverty. Situated further from the lake, San Pablo enjoys fewer benefits from tourism. Living conditions in San Pablo, by EVERY measure of development, are poor, and seventy percent of the population live in extreme poverty. Residents of both towns are isolated from the nearest regional hospital.