As the poor in Latin American cities continue to struggle, there has been interest in the role of non-government organizations (NGOs) in addressing their difficult circumstances. This article examines the lives of residents in two peripheral urban neighborhoods of Guatemala City. The hardships posed by urban poverty are documented with a particular focus on women as they struggle to meet their families' needs. The experiences of women in a unique, woman-centered association are described and compared with women in communities without such associations. The goals of the analysis are (1) to provide an appreciation of the nature and evolution of precarious settlements in Guatemala City, and (2) to consider the role of NGOs in addressing the challenges women face in such settlements. One association (UPAVIM) is described that has addressed these needs through job training and employment while simultaneously providing child care and educational opportunities for children. Emphasis is given to the role of the critical middle sector in offering opportunities to the most marginalized groups. [Non-government organizations, urban poverty, women and poverty, Guatemala City].
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Geography, Planning and Development
- Urban Studies