Guatemala has made international news with four different crises in 2014.

Two of these reports support the importance of establishing food security in the Ixil region. The others give good background information on the extreme poverty in this area. See the links below for the articles. Come join us as we work toward food and water security in our corner of Guatemala. After three years of serving the Ixil with our garden program we are in a great position to make a real difference in meeting the need for proper family nutrition.

Malnutrition Causes Severe Stunting – ABC News

Fungus Cripples Coffee Production Across Central America – NY Times

Extreme Poverty – UNICEF Humanitarian Action For Children

Effects of War – Rios Montt Trial – Democracy Now


sample garden with ellena


We are completely funded for the land purchase!

invitacion Eden ixil final_1 from Jose Daniel Casia on Vimeo.


IXIL EDEN / Training Center

TRE has found a centrally located site from which to establish a permacultural garden and village technology center. Studies and classes in soil management, plant propagation and care, bio digesters, and fish farming are only a few of the themes we are pursuing. Creating a diversified seed bank of hardy nutritious plants will help us fight malnutrition and crop failure due to blight. This training center can help us teach our more than 300 gardeners new proven techniques. It also will be a place where the Ixil people can brain storm and experiment how to solve their own problems in relation to plant and animal husbandry and appropriate technologies. A place for them to connect and explore the vast knowledge of third world development ideas in their own backyard. It will give TRE a site from which to produce on a large scale the medicinal plants, fruit trees, building bamboos, hedge row grasses that we can then share in the surrounding twenty villages.

Personal Gardens

Help to continue new family gardens.¬†Our gardeners are organized in groups of ten to fifteen and receive wire for fencing, vegetable seeds, plant starts and instructions. This support allows a family to eat more nutritiously for less money. Calorie intake hovers around 1,000 per day per person and the majority of that intake is in the form of corn. By planting green leafy vegetables and super nutritious foods we can protect the health of the next generation. Garden size varies according to the space available but an 11×11 meter plot costs $60 to fence and seed. The majority of these sites are cared for by women and it is a joy to empower them to have the nutritious food their families need.

11x11 meter garden site $60 to fence


New Garden Site: $60

Package of Five Fruit Trees: $20

Sponsor a Training Scholarship: $10 per person

Sample class titles include: Soil Composting and Green Manures, Medicinal Plant Care and Use, Super Foods: How to Grow and Prepare Them.

Village Seed Store: $150

Subsidize a village seed store with six pounds of seeds. The seeds will be labeled, packaged and sold for 15 cents per spoonful. Approximately 1,500 seed packages!

Project History:

In 2011 TRE began in a small way to promote the growing of small vegetables gardens. By the end of 2012, we felt we had come upon simple way to improve the available food for these impoverished families. In the early spring of 2012 when we ask the village of Nueve Puntos if they wanted to continue receiving seeds after their second cycle they replied “Seguro! Cuando nos da semillia comemos Rico! For sure! When you give us the seeds we eat rich!” TRE did not need any more encouragement than that.
read more about how we started our garden projects...

Our first forms of help was to simply hand out vegetable seeds by the spoon full wrapped in small pieces of newspapers, very simple, very low budget. Two improvements we soon added were help with fencing and better packaging of seeds. The original gardens were fenced with whatever was available. Those who used vines to lash sampling poles together would see their work rot in six to eight months. Those who used discarded pieces of roofing, plastic or rocks would be in a constant battle with the roaming farm animals. In order to establish family gardening as a permanent fixture in the lives of these people we wanted to give them a better solution. We have settled on using 1 roll of chicken wire and 1/3 roll of barbwire to fence a 11 meter square garden spot. The villagers are supplying the post and we are encouraging planting small trees in the fence row to grow a living fence post. We have been importing special seed varieties from the United States as well as buying bulk seeds in Guatemala. Our packaging has advanced and we have been using the computer and address labels to label our seed packages in two languages (Ixil and Spanish). During the spring of 2013 we distributed almost 200 pounds of seeds. This year we are seeking to take the next step in seed security by establishing a nursery center and seed collection program. In keeping with our desire to establish a long lasting impact we are distributing fruit trees and planning a training center in the nursery. Life in this region is simple and often hard. Our gardening program does not follow the better homes and garden picture book and has many rough edges but it is making an impact. It is itself a seed starting to grow and produce a bountiful harvest. Please join us as we cultivate a better future.

Water Projects

Los Encuentros Amechel Area Rain Collection tanks

Population Served:

67 Families plus

existing Rain collection tank Los Encuentros

Project Cost $48,000

Project Schedule Feb. 2015 – June 2016

After seven years of visiting the remote village of Los Encuentros and listening to their pleas to help them secure potable water, we have put their village at the top of our priority list. This village and four others in the immediate area are dependent on the collection of rain water for all their needs. Without sufficient financial ability to build water tanks, they have been collecting water from open cisterns like the one shown here.
With the hope of the completion of a Rotary International water grant we are mobilizing to begin building concrete rain water tanks in front of each home. After completing the 67 tanks needed in this village we would like to continue passing through the neighboring villages to bring a secure water source to all.

This will be a two year process that will average 8 new water tanks per month. Each tank cost $700.


Spring Improvement in the Village Jua’

Population Served:

197 families

Project Cost $8,200

Project schedule – October- December 2015

Jua’ has sought help with the purchase and piping of a new mountain spring for their community. The present spring has a high level of turbidity after rains and dries to a trickle during the dry season. TRE has completed a study of a new spring that yields 75 gallon per minute during the dry season. This flow rate is sufficient for a community three times their present population thus securing their water needs well into the future. A pending Rotary grant will cover the bulk of this project.


Community Water in Horno Chel

Horno Chel's undeveloped spring

Population Served:

20 families

Project Cost $5,250

Thanks to Miracles In Action, this project is fully funded.

Project Schedule? May- October 2015

Horno Chel is a new community of 20 families that have relocated from the village of Chel. They have moved further up into the mountains in search of available land to farm. The community looks idyllic with its thatch roof homes in a mountain setting but life is very hard there. A nearby spring is the source of their drinking water but it resembles a muddy water hole more than a clear mountain spring. This project will cap and protect the spring area, place a manual pump on the spring and pump the water into a holding tank on a nearby ridge. From there the water will be piped to two community water faucets. What a great step forward in health for this budding community. This project is funded by a donor with Miracles in Action.


Current funding needs for water 

Donate $100 Towards a Rain Collection Water Tank or the completion of faucet.


Sotzil 2014 Water Project Completed!

Read More about the Sotzil Project…