Tunaja is a very primitive area of the state of Quiche, Guatemala. The inhabitants are Quiche Mayans who trace their ancestral roots to the ancient Mayan civilization. The prevalent language is the Mayan dialect - Quiche. The people are either farmers or shepherds and live off the fruits of their labors. Very little money ever changes hands as they use a barter system. Public education is available - however, most families cannot afford it. Electricity and running water are not available in most of the area. Life in Tunaja is extremely difficult.
It is a great pleasure to say hello to you through this letter. I hope you are receiving many blessings from God. My name is Ingrid Graciela Loarca Ortiz, and I am a happy and healthy 8-year-old girl. I am in first grade this year. In my free time, I like to play with my dolls at home. My favorite color is purple, my favorite animal is a peacock, and my favorite food is chow mien.
Both of my biological parents lives with me. My father works as a farmer to take care of our needs. My mother is a hardworking housewife and weaves typical Guatemalan clothing to help support us economically. I have eight siblings: 3 brothers and 5 sisters. I am joyful to say that we are all healthy, and God has taken good care of us. Also, we do not attend a church yet. I live in a village called Tunaja, and it takes me 1 hour to walk to the feeding program. My humble house has walls made of tin sheet, the roof is made of tin sheet, and the floor is made of dirt. There is one room and a separate kitchen. We have hens, too. We do not have running water, plumbing for a bathroom, nor electricity at home. To obtain water, we use a hose and connect it to a water source. When we need to use the bathroom, we go into a field. We see at night by using candles. My mother owns the house. Our greatest need is corn. May God continue blessing you!
The Living Waters Evangelism Team is speaking to families in Quiche by phone call. They spoke to my mother to receive information pertaining to me.
Lots of hugs,
Ingrid Graciela Loarca Ortiz
Translated by: Kalyan Marroquin / AAC Missionary Intern