In February, I went on a two day tour of Guatemala. Although it wasn’t the Guatemala most Americans see, or any other tourists for that matter. I was there to visit schools that just 12 months ago had no clean water or sanitation. I was one of 12 people representing Tap’s advertising agency partners. Some of the agencies on the tour include Energy BBDO, Fishtank, BYU Ad Lab, Publicis West and Turner Broadcasting. In this video, Guillermo Paz, from Populicom in Puerto Rico, translates for some women in a rural school in Esquintla.
It was pretty eye-opening to see how these children live. I didn’t see a single toy the entire time. Malnutrition and disease are predominant. But it’s the way most children in the world live. It’s one thing to see poverty in photos online, or on TV, but it’s entirely different to stand in their presence and share the same space.
There was a bright ending to the trip when we had the honor to meet with the sister of the new Guatemalan president. She’s a true humanitarian, a water expert, and has a plan to return the identity and the dignity of the Mayan people. She has a big job ahead of her. I wish her luck and fortitude.