Guatemala’s Women: Moving Their Country Forward

Ambassador Melanne Verveer poses for a photograph with participants at the launch of Mujeres Adelante in Guatemala, October 2012. [State Department photo/ Public Domain]

About the Author: Melanne Verveer serves as Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues.

From the first time I visited with then-First Lady Hillary Clinton in 1998, Guatemala’s natural beauty and the warmth of its people, particularly the strength of its women despite many hardships, have left me with a special affinity for this Central American country. However, it has also long been a place rife with challenges. Even after the 1996 peace accords were signed to end the 36-year internal conflict, Guatemala has continued to struggle with malnutrition, poverty, corruption, organized crime, and high rates of violence against women.

Despite these challenges, my recent visit to the country has convinced me that Guatemala is beginning to address them, particularly gender-based violence (GBV) and other crimes. A big part of this change… more »

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