Entries by Eric Toupin

Clara & Marco: A strong start

In the last days of June earlier this year, Clara’s husband told her and their seven children to get out. They had just had a particularly violent altercation, something that had become a regular feature of their lives. Their family had been living in a shoddily constructed wood and plastic shelter just outside of Guatemala […]

Pa’nibal to organize as a Guatemalan NGO

Earlier this summer I met with Irene and Louis, the Vice President and President of INCEDES (Central American Institute of Social Studies and Development) at their offices in Guatemala City. With their help and yours, Pa’nibal will be an NGO by the summer of 2018. Pictured above is Irene, Juan, myself and Louis. Longevity for […]

Pa’nibal welcomes our youngest resident ever

Earlier this month a new resident at Pa’nibal, Irene, gave birth to a little boy. She came to Pa’nibal after bearing months of physical and verbal abuse from her boyfriend as well as a family member. After a particularly violent episode at her home, Irene decided she had to leave. Irene already had two little […]

Six months later: Sofia & Manuel

Sofia was living with an older boyfriend when she had her first child. She was fifteen years old, had never regularly attended school and had very little contact with her family. After her relationship turned abusive Sofia left to live on the street. As a minor she was unable to gain custody of her son. […]

Beatrice’s new home

Beatrice’s parents died when she was eleven. She and her brothers, both seven years older than her, continued living in their small family home in a suburban municipality near Sacatepéquez known for difficulties with youth gangs. Beatrice stopped attending school almost immediately after her parents died for lack of money and family support. Her older […]

Pa’nibal: More than a shelter

It’s easy to think of Pa’nibal as a women’s shelter or a transitional home. In one sense that’s exactly what we are, but we also go beyond providing shelter to cultivating the community and practical resources that women can use to improve their day-to-day lives and their futures. Brenda had been with her husband José […]

New volunteer driven classes

Pa’nibal offers a variety of rotating classes and workshops, mostly conducted by sister organizations or volunteers from the surrounding community. When new residents arrive at Pa’nibal, it can take some time for them to become integrated into a daily schedule. In time, many residents work and attend vocational school outside of the home, as well as […]

New beds; more space

Pa’nibal operates out of a two story home with space for about twenty women and children – assuming we had the furniture and staff to support such a population. Having just moved into the home in the summer, we’re still working to furnish family rooms, dormitories and common spaces. Until last week we had just six […]

Pa’nibal welcomes a new Director of Operations

Pa’nibal is excited to have Alejandra Hernández (left in the photo above) as our new Director of Operations. Alejandra is joining our team after sixteen years of social work, activism and women’s advocacy. She’s the founder of two NGOs that advocate women’s rights, Centro Comunitario EducArte and Mujeres Artesanas de Paz, is formally educated in social work, psychology and philosophy, […]