Project Salud y Paz was created in early 2001 as a project of International Hands in Service (a U.S. based 501c3 nonprofit corporation/organization that procures new and used vehicles, equipment, and supplies for Christian mission projects throughout the world). Salud y Paz is now a joint project of IHS, the Iglesia Metodista Nacional Primitiva de Guatemala, and the United Methodist Church in the United States. As a part of the UMC, the project is a designated Advance Special of the General Board of Global Ministries.
Salud y Paz currently operates two health and dental clinics that primarily serve the Mayan population in Guatemala. 75% of the rural Mayan population lives in EXTREME poverty, with an income of less than US$1.00/day, or approximately $360/year.
Since August 2001 the clinics in Camanchaj and Xela have been open full time. We have now documented well over 100,000 patient visits and estimate we have provided millions of dollars in medical/dental services.
In addition to our clinics, we have opened a preschool with 50 students who receive early childhood education, as well as nutritious meals and snacks throughout the day.
We are currently constructing a new building at the Camanchaj clinic with the goal of eventually opening a regional surgery center in addition to the medical clinic, dental clinic, and school at that location. In addition, we hope to soon open a clinic in Cunen and have clinics are working toward functioning clinics in San Antonio and Patalup.
In addition to our regular weekly clinic hours (two days in each clinic), we host medical, surgical, and construction teams from the U.S. throughout the year.
IHS through Project Salud y Paz provides a ministry of health services, health promotion and education to the people of Guatemala leading into a self-sustaining partnership.