Curamericas and the Consulate of Guatemala in Raleigh: Joining Forces for Social Good
Posted: February 18, 2021
By Cristina España, Vice-Consul of Guatemala in Raleigh, North Carolina
“Incredible things can be done simply if we are committed to making them happen.” This is a remarkable quote by Sadhguru, an Indian author known worldwide for his philanthropy and spiritual guidance. For me, his words describe what Curamericas Global has done in my home country of Guatemala, and where I live and serve now: the Guatemalan Consulate in Raleigh, N.C. The Consulate is in charge of around 80,000 Guatemalans living in North Carolina and 45,000 in South Carolina. Curamericas is filled with amazing and kind people who make you feel everything will get better, because they have made a commitment with you.
My name is Cristina España. I currently work as the vice-consul, and I have had the honor of being a witness to how Curamericas works with the people.
It all started in 2017, the same year we opened the Consulate. Andrew sent us an invitation through Facebook to attend a Curamericas event. We saw an impressive presentation of their long-term commitment in Guatemala, and how they were able to earn trust and save lives.
That event led to a formal meeting, which then led to having nurses and doctors from Curamericas at the Consulate. By 2019, we officially opened a formal program called “A Health Window” that was held during our Consular Saturdays. We would have around 200 visitors attend to get Consular Services. This was the first official, and recurrent, Health Window in a Guatemalan Consulate in the U.S., going beyond what anyone could see was possible back then.
Now with a pandemic, our community has suffered tremendously. The lack of health care, resources and information for our Latino community is truly visible. Resources are there, people that want to help are there, and Curamericas was ahead of its time and prepared to give access to health screenings and guide our Guatemalan nationals through much-needed education, services, resources and hope.
I believe there is no need to explain at this moment in history why having access to health care is so important. Curamericas opened a window of possibilities, and our Guatemalan citizens felt cared for by them. Curamericas did not just provide health screenings; they made a social statement that let our citizens know they are human beings who deserve to be respected.
When the pandemic hit back in March, Curamericas, as always, was one of the first organizations to re- act. Curamericas helped the Guatemalan Consulate by coordinating volunteers who called more than 10,000 Guatemalan families. The information the volunteers needed to share was complicated and confusing; however, call by call, Curamericas patiently guided and supported one of the communities most in need. They provided information about symptoms, places to get tested and connections with food pantries. They helped us and our community ahead of time; they gave us hope through healing.
So, what makes our collaboration different and unique? We listen, we adapt. Curamericas has done, as Sadhguru describes better than I, incredible things, because they are simply committed to making them happen.
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