It is easy to sit comfortably at the computer, knowing that you will wake up to an expanding education, food on your plate and clean water to drink. In Guatemala in the 1960s, waking up safe in your bed was your prayer at night.
Friday will mark the fifth year people of Fredericton, along with the communities of Tatamagouche, Halifax, and Antigonish, Nova Scotia have come together to form the “Maritimes-Guatemala Breaking the Silence Network”. Their goal is to help raise money for citizens in Guatemala. The money is used to build schools and to help educate farmers growing fair trade coffee and those who are affected by Canadian gold mining in the city of Rabinal. The school is one of few who still teach in the indigenous Achi language.
Between 1960 and 1966, Guatemala was in civil war, the longest one seen in Latin American history. The effects from the war are still being felt 50 years later and the aftershock has brought the Maritime provinces together to help those who are in need.
Tracy Glynn, member of “Breaking the Silence” and the New Brunswick Conservation Council, said the network was committed to raising $50,000 for the Guatemalan communities and this year they will meet their goal.
To celebrate the fundraising effort and to bring awareness of the civil war and other social injustices affecting Guatemala, a benefit dinner, Nocha Latina, will be held Friday night at the Wilmot Church, from 6-9pm. The dinner provided will be a traditional Central-American dish. Entertainment will be provided by Paraguayan harp musician, John Thompson, and music by Cesar Morales. A silent auction will also take place.
Tickets are $10 per adult, $5 per child (ages 5-12), or a family price of $20 and being sold at Westminster Books (King Street), True Food Organics (Charlotte Street), and the Cedar Lunch Café (York Street). For more information contact the NB Conservation Council at the Conserver House on St. John Street.