CAJOLA, GUATEMALA - FEBRUARY 12: Indigenous Mayan Mam-speaking cook Rosemary Huinillistens during a co-op meeting of women working with Grupo Cajola, at a group meeting on February 12, 2017 in Cajola, Guatemala. In Cajola, in the highlands of western Guatemala, some 70 percent of the men have emigrated to the United States to work, many leaving behind wives with children who barely know their fathers. Grupo Cajola, funded by American donations, is attempting to make the town's economy prosper locally to help reduce the need for emigration. The spectre of increased deportations from the U.S. back to Guatemala and reduced remittances from the U.S. under a Trump Administration ha made the made the need to transform the local economy more urgent than ever. Remitances from undocumented Guatemalan laborers are the main source of income of Guatemala, often tearing the social fabric in communities, while also driving an uneven housing boom in towns like Cajola. The NGO has set up a weaving center, an egg farm, carpentry shop, internet cafe, library and education programs for pre-schoolers and their parents, while providing scholarships for more than 20 young residents to learn local trades. Textiles they produce are now exported for sale to the U.S. Grupo Cajola was founded in 2000 by Eduardo Jimenez, who lived as an undocumented immigrant for 10 years in the U.S. before returning to Guatemala. He coordinates locally with the group's American director Caryn Maxim, who organizes funding and product sales in New Jersey. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
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January 8th, 2019
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