Sandra Hannen, Despertar!

Sandra Hannen, a passionate humane educator and lifelong human rights and animal activist, lost and found her heart in the indigenous communities of Guatemala. Having worked in Cunén for four years, Sandra’s program, Despertar! brings humane leadership training to the youth of Cunén, Guatemala. The goal is to build local capacity to promote social justice and build a world free of oppression and poverty.

Cunén is among the areas with the highest rates of chronic malnutrition and illiteracy in Guatemala and the world. “For me, justice doesn’t mean spending millions putting away the perpetrators of genocide, but rather giving people what they need: justice is food, reconstruction, and an education that empowers the people,” Sandra said.

Despertar! will conduct humane leadership training and capacity building with a group of 45 indigenous youth facilitators and community organizers in Cunén, who will in turn work with other young people to organize and campaign together on important issues.

“The vision is that youth in Cunén and surrounding regions have an active social and political voice with which to stand up for their people, help them access their basic needs, and ultimately share their gifts and talents with the world,” she said.

To learn more about Despertar! visit their website, and Twitter.

GRANT AWARD DATE:  August 17, 2014