C H I L A  inc.

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Ch'ina Us Li Amaq'ink
"Beautiful is Life"

a Q'eqchi Mayan saying

"Blending q'eqchi' Mayan Traditions with western medicine"

 © andrew verbovzky 2006


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CHILA Inc. is short for "Ch’ina Us Li Amaq’ink"
(“Beautiful is Life” in Maya Q’eq’chi) 

“Blending Q’eqchi Mayan Traditions with Western Medicine” 

The CHILA Model 

Traditional Q'eqchi herbal medicine clinic once/week

Treatment of  acute and chronic conditions including tropical disease

Prenatal care

 Education related to illness and based in prevention


Strengthening existing government health center (Centro de Salud) without duplication of services

Coordination of specialty care including lab work, imaging and surgical services


Counseling related to themes relevant to problems in the region such as self esteem, domestic violence and reproductive health

Womens Health

All of our service are always provided in the native Maya Q’eqchi language of the region. 

Part of our mission is to provide high-quality primary care, which is nearly completely absent in the region; Most people go to the pharmacy, describe their symptoms, and are prescribed as many doses of medication that they can afford at the moment. 

We also aim to strengthen and preserve Q’eqchi Mayan traditional medicine. There is an epidemic of sham homeopathic treatments, vitamin therapies and serums on which average Guatemalan families spend large portions of their already limited income. Ricardo, our herbal medicine partner, has a clinic where he provides consultation and remedies all made from local herbs he has been harvesting for over 40 years in the surrounding mountains. 

Our partners, Q’ana’ Tz’uul Taq’a (The Women of the Hillside Spirit), a Q’eqhi Mayan womens group is proud, well organized and powerful in a community where women don’t traditionally work outside of the home. Their passion and projects include preserving traditional farming methods and diversifying crops, vaccination of home based animals, production of traditional medicines, organization of the Chisec Indigenous Market, land rights and obtaining land titles, and promoting natural and herbal Mayan traditional medicine. Our clinic shares grounds with Q’ana Tz’uul Taq’a’s (AQT) facilities. 

We also strive to strengthen existing government facilities in Chisec, and vow to avoid duplication of services. The Centro de Salud in Chisec has a small ER staffed by nurses aides and occasionally physicians from other cities in Guatemala, a small inpatient unit and attends to many complicated births transferred in from around the municipality. Ambulance service transfers most complex medical cases to the regional hospital in Coban, 2 hours south. Medications, supplies and equipment are always lacking. Staff is hungry for knowledge and CHILA provides evidence based, educational workshops and helps provide practical protocol for the most common clinical presentations in the region.

Provide high quality PRIMARY care to the populations of rural Guatemala, strengthen the existing government health facilities, preserve Q'eqchi Maya medical and other traditions and offer traditional Maya herbal medicine as part of our treatment modality, promote sustainable business practices, healthy schools, and the activities of our partner women's groups

To visibly reduce negative health outcomes in rural Guatemala by providing a comprehensive level of care and creating an infrastructure that promotes health (physical well-being, economic security, education, and cultural preservation).

Empowering communities, Serving the specific needs of indigenous populations, Excellence in health care regardless of ability to pay, and Commitment to distributive justice

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