The Guatemala Literacy Project (GLP) is a network of Rotarians, clubs, districts, and the nonprofit organization Cooperative for Education (CoEd) with a common interest in improving education for underserved students in Guatemala. Take a look and see who is already involved - Over 600 Rotary Clubs in 80 Districts (7 clubs from right here, in District 7070, and over 87 in Canada). Since 1997, the GLP has served over 188,000 Guatemalan students through four sustainable programs that are tested and proven to work. In 2017, RI President Ian Riseley called the GLP “the gold standard of Rotary projects” for its sustainability and impact. If your Rotary Club is looking for a Literacy Project, please take a look .......


Guatemala’s Central and Western Highlands exhibit one of the most extreme combinations of systemic poverty, illiteracy, and inequality in the hemisphere. The indigenous populations that inhabit these regions suffer from malnutrition (rates of which rank among the worst in the world), poor health outcomes, racism, high rates of illiteracy, and low levels of educational attainment. Together, these factors virtually guarantee that the next generation will be no better off than the last.

Poverty disproportionately affects the country’s indigenous Mayans. They make up half of the population, but account for less than a quarter of total income and consumption. A typical Mayan laborer earns less than $4 a day. Poverty rates in rural Guatemala often exceed 70%.

Historically, government policies excluded Mayans from sharing in the benefits of the country’s economic growth. Today, indigenous Guatemalans remain targets of racism, exclusion (from land, labor, and education), and injustice. They also endure the brutal legacy of a 36-year civil war that left more than 200,000 dead and hundreds of thousands more displaced. The hostilities ravaged the fabric of Mayan communities across the Western Highlands, many of which struggle, even after two decades of formal peace, to recover from the violence.

The Maya also experience a lack of affordable, quality educational opportunities. Teachers in rural schools often lack formal training and the resources—such as books and computers—that they need to facilitate learning. Many young people in rural communities become bored in school, fail to develop proper study skills, and drop out.

As a result, illiteracy rates among indigenous adults reach as high as 40%. Educational attainment is four years on average, and less than two years for indigenous women. Experts estimate that for every 10 children in Guatemala, only four will make it to middle school, and only two will complete high school. These young people lack the skills to achieve higher-paying jobs, and the cycle of poverty continues.

We partner with impoverished communities to implement four complementary programs:

Reading : trains teachers in effective reading instruction and provides them with quality children’s literature

Textbooksprovides textbooks to middle schools and trains teachers to use them effectively in the classroom

Computers: teaches students to use technology to solve real-world problems so they can secure better jobs

Youth Development: transforms young lives through youth development, social support, and scholarships

We measure and test our programs to make sure they do the job:

50% - Reading comprehension improves by 50%.

46% - Dropout rates fall by 46%.

95% - 95% of graduates get a job or keep studying.

53% - 53% of graduates pay for their siblings to go to school.

We use sustainable program models that work far into the future: 

By investing in people and by requiring them to make an investment too.

As a result, some of our projects have been running for over 20 years. 

Learn about the Sustainability here.

The Guatemala Literacy Project (GLP) is a network of individual Rotarians, Rotary clubs and districts, and the nonprofit organization Cooperative for Education (CoEd) with a common interest in improving education for underserved students in Guatemala. It is one of the largest grassroots, multi-club, multi-district projects in Rotary, with over 600 participating clubs since 1997.


ClubsSee a map of over 600 Rotary clubs that have supported the GLP.

Advisory BoardMeet our Advisory Board of Rotarians from around the world.

Partner Organization: Meet our expert partner organization of 20+ years, Cooperative for Education.

Literacy Fellows: Meet some of the most outstanding advocates for literacy in Guatemala.

You can get involved:

Join the Global Grant : Every year the GLP coordinates a global grant that funds mainly hard costs for the Culture of Reading, Textbook, Computer, and Rise Youth Development Programs. It is co-hosted by one Guatemalan Rotary club and one international club, while other clubs from around the world pledge their financial support. Learn More

Sponsor a Scholar: The GLP connects individual and club sponsors to students, classrooms, and schools in Guatemala that need their support. This year, GLP clubs and individuals are rallying to sponsor over 300 Rise Program scholars who will not be able to stay in school next year without their support. Learn More


Volunteer In Guatemala:

Lend a hand and build relationships with the communities whose lives you are changing!

Tours are operated by our partner organization, Cooperative for Education (CoEd).

Click on an option below to explore the tours on CoEd’s website:

GLP TourFebruary 2–10, 2019 - Deliver textbooks, inaugurate computer centers, and share in fellowship with other Rotarians from around the world on this nine-day tour.

Snapshot Tour February 19–24, 2019 ; July 30–August 4, 2019 - Travel through beautiful landscapes and experience Guatemalan culture as you visit GLP program schools on this six-day tour.

Helping Hands Tour: July 21–27, 2019 - Perform hands-on service projects alongside primary-school students at one of the GLP’s program schools during this seven-day tour.


Contact Us:  2300 Montana Ave, Suite 301, Cincinnati, OH 45211