Mission Guatemala Inc. was founded by Tom Heaton, a United Methodist pastor, who has been supporting the needs of the poor of Guatemala since the year 2000.
In the spring of 2009, Mission Guatemala was founded to help the poor of Guatemala. In the spring of 2010, Mission Guatemala located a mission site in San Andrés and began the needed renovations to open a medical office, preschool/nutrition center, and dental office.
Medical Clinic – Mission Guatemala operates a medical clinic 5 days a week in San Andrés Semetabaj. Clients pay a small fee for consultation with the doctor and a small fee for any needed medicines. The doctor speaks Spanish, Kakchiquel, and Quiche which allows him to communicate with patients in their native languages. No one is denied access to the doctor due to lack of funds.
Dental Clinic – Mission Guatemala also operates a dental clinic Mondays and Wednesdays at its San Andrés Semetabaj site. The dentist helps alleviate the tremendous dental issues faced by the indigenous Guatemalan population.
Preschool/Nutrition Center – The preschool/nutrition center has 35 of the poorest children in the area enrolled. The families are screened by social workers for acceptance into the program. The preschool helps children increase their knowledge of Spanish to help them be successful when they enter the public school system. The children are also provided with a healthy breakfast, healthy snack and vitamin each day. They are also taught good health habits such as brushing their teeth.
Feeding Centers – We operate two feeding centers in the region. One is the community of Nueva Esperanza and the other is in the community of Pacaman. Each school day, we feed over 150 children a healthy and nutritious lunch with the help of the mothers of the village. Many of the children in these communities are malnourished and underfed. Johns Creek United Methodist Church in suburban Atlanta partners with Mission Guatemala to fund the feeding center at Pacaman.
Community Aid – Although not a primary part of Mission Guatemala’s mission, from time to time we help meet community needs. This includes computers for school classrooms, supporting the local firemen, and helping with other community needs.
Castleton UMC has supported Mission Guatemala through Faith Promise donations since the beginning. Several teams have traveled to Guatemala to assist Tom in his mission work.