History

History

Miracles in Action was founded in December 2004 as a response to the extreme poverty witnessed by our founders, Penny and Noreen Rambacher. Since that time, we have grown into a wide network of volunteers and supporters who further our mission of helping poor families to help themselves through education, vocation and sustainable development projects.

Watch our short video on how we got started:



Our team of volunteers seeks out under-served Mayan villages of need in rural Guatemala. We research projects that focus on education, vocational training, and other basics like providing clean water, safe stoves, and water filters. We then select those projects that achieve long-term results, improve quality of life, and allow truly impoverished people to help themselves.

100% of your donations go directly to our projects. Administrative expenses are funded by the sale of handicrafts produced by Guatemala’s cottage industry and a separately-funded account.

Why do we work in rural Guatemala?

Sometimes we are asked “Why not help the poor in our country?” In the U.S. there are poor people, but there are also government and social programs to assist the poor.

Housing for coffee pickers

Photo taken inside coffee plantation barracks, where 100s of desperate for work indigenous people are packed into unsanitary living conditions. Toddlers are left alone, while their mother and siblings pick coffee in the fields for $1-2/day.

In Guatemala there are no such programs. The poor in Guatemala are at the level of extreme poverty, defined by Economist Jeffrey Sachs (author of “The End of Poverty”) “when every day is a struggle just to be alive – without basics like food, water, and warm shelter”.

The poor in Guatemala are not looking for a hand out; they are hoping for a hand up. They want to educate their children, possibly learn a vocational trade, and have safe drinking water in a secure home. They do not want to leave their villages and come illegally to the US for a job, but sometimes do this so their family can survive. Teaching children to read and write offers them opportunities not available to their uneducated parents forced to pick coffee as the only job available.