Paso Por Paso’s Activities in Mayan Guatemala

San Pedro volcano, Lake Atitlan

PASO focuses its efforts primarily on supporting indigenous Mayan people in the Lake Atitlan region of Guatemala. It works cooperatively with other Canadian groups and individuals with similar interests and goals. While some of PASO’s directors visit Panajachel each year to oversee our program initiatives, PASO utilizes the expertise of others to implement its programs. Most of PASO’s efforts are supported through the Guatemalan non-profit organization called Mayan Families. Mayan Families’ main operational base is in Panajachel where it has built strong community connections, cultivated good relationships with municipalities, local institutions and service, earned the respect of ordinary indigenous people, and offers multi-lingual communications.

Paso sponsors children in schools, has micro loans for Tierra Linda women, has a school twinning program, offers bursaries to college and university students in the Lake Atitlan area and provides many services to the school in Tierra Linda. Details of these projects can be found here, on our facebook page and on our website http://www.pasoporpaso.ca

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August 22nd Gravenhurst Market.

Paso Por Paso will be at the Gravenhurst Market on August 22nd 2018 from 8 am to 1 pm. A good selection of original Guatemalan items is still available. The market is very large and is a great way to spend a Wednesday morning.

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Bob Goodwin joins Paso Board

Bob Goodwin

Bob Goodwin was elected to the Paso Por Paso Board of Directors at the June 2018 AGM. Bob has extensive experience in Guatemala and the Paso Board looks forward to working with him. Bob provided the following summary of his experiences in Guatemala.
“I recently (late summer 2017) moved to Orillia from the Niagara area, where my wife and I had spent the last 19 years after taking early retirement from our work in Ottawa. My career was in engineering (civil/municipal) and construction. From 2003 to 2008, I was involved with a local organization “Wells of Hope”. The main focus of the group was to drill wells to provide water to the people in the eastern highlands of Guatemala in the department of Jalapa. My involvement was to use my expertise in water distribution once we were successful in establishing reliable water sources. As well, I initiated a programme of school construction, building 3 schools of 3 classrooms each during our initial stay from Oct 2004 to April 2005. I was co-chair of the board for several years and made numerous trips to the area. I have also volunteered with a group called the Guatemalan Stove Project and have spent time in the Mayan villages in the Xela (Quetzaltenango) area. Although certainly not fluent, I have sufficient Spanish to be comfortable in Guatemala.”

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Bob Goodwin joins Paso Por Paso

Bob Goodwin has joined the Board of Directors of Paso Por Paso for a three year term. Bob has extensive experience in Guatemala and Paso looks forward to his involvement with Paso Por Paso.

Bob Goodwin
I recently (late summer 2017) moved to Orillia from the Niagara area, where my wife and I had spent the last 19 years after taking early retirement from our work in Ottawa. My career was in engineering (civil/municipal) and construction. From 2003 to 2008, I was involved with a local organization “Wells of Hope”. The main focus of the group was to drill wells to provide water to the people in the eastern highlands of Guatemala in the department of Jalapa. My involvement was to use my expertise in water distribution once we were successful in establishing reliable water sources. As well, I initiated a programme of school construction, building 3 schools of 3 classrooms each during our initial stay from Oct 2004 to April 2005. I was co-chair of the board for several years and made numerous trips to the area. I have also volunteered with a group called the Guatemalan Stove Project and have spent time in the Mayan villages in the Xela (Quetzaltenango) area. Although certainly not fluent, I have sufficient Spanish to be comfortable in Guatemala.

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JUNE 23 Craft Sale.

Paso Por Paso will be at the Orillia Farmers’ Market at the Library this coming Saturday, June 23rd. Doors open at 7:30 and the market ends at 12:30. There is still a good selection of original Guatemalan crafts including scarves, table runners, table clothes, jewelry, pottery, purses and much more. All proceeds go towards helping the Guatemalan Mayan people in the Lake Atitlan area.

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Paso AGM June 10th

Paso Por Paso’s Annual General Meeting will be held on Sunday June 10th, 2018 from 12 noon- 2 p.m. in the Parlour of St. Paul’s United Church/Centre, 62 Peter St. North in Orillia, ON. Please feel free to join us as we look at the activities of the past year and continue to support Mayan Families living in Guatemala. Light refreshments will be served.

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Successful Plant Sales

Paso’s annual and perennial plant sales were a tremendous success. Approximately $4500 was raised from the sale of plants, with $3000 coming from the annuals and $1500 from the perennials.
Guatemalan crafts were also sold at both sales with Paso raising another $850 to support its efforts in Guatemala.

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Annuals arrive

The Geraniums and Fibrous Begonias have arrived and will be available Friday May 18th from 9:30 am to 5:30 pm. All orders can be picked up at St. Paul’s Centre. Enter from the Peter Street entrance.
Paso Por Paso will also have a craft table of Guatemalan items available as well. The selection is still very good, so don’t delay.

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Perennial Plants and Craft Sale.

Paso Por Paso is holding its annual perennial plant and craft sale on Saturday May 26th. Drop by 136 Peter St. N. between 8am and noon for some inexpensive and very hardy perennials as well as a wide selection of crafts. There will also be a good selection of heirloom tomato plants available.
If you have unused pots, 4 inches in diameter and larger, please drop them off at 136 Peter St. N by May 21st.

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R.T.O grant to Paso.

St. Paul’s Centre provided the location of the annual Paso Por Paso pancake brunch. Janice Napp, president of District 17 R.T.O. (Retired Teachers of Ontario), presented Paso with a cheque that assisted the Orillia group in the building of a roof over the concrete playground of the remote village school in Tierra Linda, Guatemala.
Each year R.T.O. grants monies under their Project Service to Others and District Grants to local not for profits. Charities and organizations with R.T.O. members can apply both at the district and provincial level. Paso’s grant came from the District Grant. R.T.O.’s aim is to make the public aware that teachers are still very active in the local community and abroad after retirement.
Janice Knapp is photographed with Paso president Doris Middleton accepting the cheque. The annual pancake brunch includes many other R.T.O. members supporting Paso’s efforts.

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Pancake Brunch success

Paso Por Paso’s annual Pancake Brunch and craft sale raised over $1000 for the local organization. All of the proceeds will go towards the many projects Paso is involved with in the Panajachel area of Guatemala. Many thanks to Judith Rapson for organizing the event and to Steve Moreland who coordinated the preparation of the delicious sausages and pancakes and to Dale Duncan for the craft table. The many Paso members and friends helping with the setup, food preparation and clean up assisted greatly in making the day a success.
Fred Fallis organized the Earth Day quiz and the Dick Johnson table was the winner and they each received key chains for their knowledge about Earth Day related events..

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