Aid for San Bartolo-Xultun Project Families in the Petén, Guatemala

$14,382 of $14,280 goal
100% Complete


The pandemic has been a disaster in rural Petén, Guatemala and the families working with archaeologists need your help. The San Bartolo-Xultun Archaeological Project is committed to helping our extended project family in the Petén through deliveries of food and basic supplies – we are asking for your assistance. The SBX Project is fast approaching its 20th year of research in the Petén region of Guatemala. Although our research team has grown and changed over the years, our San Bartolo-Xultun “family” from local communities have been there through it all. These project members from the Petén have played a critical role in the success of the project – from excavating the earliest Maya murals to running a camp in the remote jungle. The current pandemic is having a significant impact in rural Petén – there are limited health clinics, significant decline in tourism, and archaeological fieldwork is suspended – and many of our team members are struggling. In September, expert excavator and tunelero Don Felipe Quixchan died from Covid and we mourn his loss greatly. Some families are straining with recovery from infection, many families are having a hard time supporting themselves and obtaining basic goods. 

We began our efforts to provide aid in June, 2020. Costing approximately $83 (Q620) for one family per month, we raised enough money to help 43 families during the months of July and August. Distributions included eggs, rice, beans, cereal, cleaning supplies, and several other items (see photos below). Thanks to Wendy's gracious donation, we were also able to include face masks for both adults and children. Acquiring large quantities of goods while there were restrictions, then delivering this aid was no small task. Boris and Wendy coordinated with our great project members Jose Luis Garrido and Saul Garcia in the Petén to purchase all of the items, pack the aid packages, and spend nearly four days driving them to the communities across northern Guatemala where our team members live. Jose Luis’s wife, Karla, and daughter, Alejandra, were incredibly helpful!

The situation in the Petén is not yet improving and we need your help to support the San Bartolo-Xultun team members and their families in northern Guatemala. Our goal is to raise money to provide food and supply distributions until we go back to the field in March. We aim to raise $14,280 to distribute supplies in November, December, January, and February. As we reach each month’s goal of $3570, the money will be sent down for supplies. The incredible group effort in June made a significant impact in bettering the health and security of 43 families. Please consider contributing to this second campaign to increase the well-being of these families during the coming months as well. By no means are we asking anyone to contribute funds that you do not have available; however, if you are in a position to help, please donate here. Your donations go directly from this site to the Maya Relief Foundation, a non-profit that has a long relationship with the Project. The Maya Relief Foundation will send 100% of donations directly to our non-profit in Guatemala and we will begin purchasing supplies and start distributions immediately. 

Please take care and thank you for your help! If you have any questions, contact

Heather Hurst, Director, Proyecto Regional Arqueológico San Bartolo-Xultun

Boris Beltrán, Co-Director, PRASBX

Mary Clarke, PRASBX project member since 2012

Franco Rossi, PRASBX project member since 2010

Posted by Heather Hurst

    Photos: November

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