About Us

Created by potrace 1.10, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2011

Why We Exist

We work to solve pressing health needs in Guatemala’s most underserved communities. Led by indigenous health care workers, we bring together medicine, culture, and language to overcome barriers to health and well-being. Where others say “no,” we say “yes.” 

We believe that your health should not depend on where you were born or the language you speak. 


How We Got Our Name


We were born on January 1, 2007 – the day on the traditional Maya calendar of Wuqu’ Kawoq, which represents medicine and healthcare providers. We chose this as our name to reflect our mission of providing quality care in rural, Maya communities.

We also go by Maya Health Alliance so it’s easier for more people to know what we’re about!


Why Guatemala

Guatemala’s income distribution is among the most unequal in the world.

A woman in Guatemala is ten times more likely than a woman in the United States to die during childbirth.

As many as 70% of children in rural communities in Guatemala suffer chronic malnutrition.

The rate of type 2 diabetes and pre-diabetes among Maya people is 25% — more than double the national rate.

These problems, which disproportionately affect Guatemala’s indigenous Maya people, are not new. The arrival of the Spanish 500 years ago marked the start of a difficult history for the Maya. They lost their lands and their freedom. In the 1980s, hundreds of thousands of lost their lives in Guatemala’s 36-year civil war. Throughout, they have endured.

Today, there are millions of Maya people living in Guatemala. Nearly half of all Guatemalans speak a Mayan language. But most healthcare in Guatemala is delivered in Spanish. Many indigenous people would prefer to die at home than to be treated in a hospital where no one speaks their language or respects their dignity. We work in Guatemala because the Maya people, languages, and culture are still alive. We want to keep it that way. 

What We Do

Since 2007, we have been advancing lasting changes in healthcare delivery across rural Guatemala so that high-quality care, health, and well-being are within reach for everyone. Led by indigenous Maya, we provide high quality health care to more than 9,000 patients in 30,000 visits a year. Community Health Workers provide care in the communities where our patients live and in their primary languages. Our program areas include child health, chronic disease, maternal health, primary care, and women’s health.

map of service areas

How We Do It

Centering language, culture, and community.

Expanding impact through collaboration.

Researching and activating best practices.

Advancing systems change.


Every year, we serve 9,000 patients and make 30,000 visits to patients’ communities and homes. We provide reproductive health care for more than 5,000 women. We offer thousands of hours of training for our staff. We research and evaluate everything we do so we can do it even better.

All of this contributes to significant improvements in the health of the communities we serve and helps advance community-based solutions to global health problems. 

Learn more about some of our exciting work here:

Maternal - Infant Health

Saving Lives

The number of deaths related to childbirth have dropped dramatically in the communities where our midwives and mobile maternal-infant health program operate.
Learn more

Malnutrition and Stunting

Healthy Growth

The rates of chronic malnutrition and stunting have dropped by 20-40% in the communities covered by our Family-Centered Nutrition and Development program.
Learn more


Continuous Improvement

We further scientific knowledge through rigorous research to encourage better outcomes and advance global health practices.
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COVID Response

Doing What it Takes

We procured protective gear for hundreds of health workers, delivered emergency food to thousands of families, and created dozens of Mayan language videos.
Learn more