Reducing vulnerabilities to contribute to rural development in the municipalities of the Upper Suchiate and Coatan basins in the department of San Marcos

Project symbolUNJP/GUA/022/UNJ
Participating countries: Guatemala
Project duration: June 2010 - May 2013
Donor: UNDP

Photo © Paolo Ceci/ FAO


The Joint Program (JP) “Reducing vulnerabilities to contribute to rural development processes in the municipalities of  the Upper Suchiate and Coatan basins in the department of San Marcos” focuses on an area which has been neglected by national development plans. This phenomenon has contributed to raise the poverty level which in turn has enhanced armed conflicts, particularly in  five municipalities (Tacaná, Tajumulco, Ixchiguán, Sibinal and San José Ojetenam) in which 90% of the population is at the edge of the poverty line. The JP addresses the challenges posed by the governmental Integrated Rural Development Plan (May, 2009), to support and strengthen this process.

The project

The strategy of the JP is based on capacity building activities coordinated by FAO, WHO and UNDP along with governmental institutions (MAGA, MSPAS and SEGEPLAN) to drive the attention to temporal and structural vulnerabilities of the area with an emphasis to the poorest. The focus of the JP represents the fulfillment of the Paris Agreements and will directly contribute to the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals. The UNDP is the funding body and is responsible for the administrative and reporting activities while FAO and WHO are the responsible agencies for its implementation.


The project aims to reduce  vulnerabilities of local communities in terms of health and rural habitat  and to produce economic opportunities for the population, fostering  gender rights and cultural heritage.

Three major outputs are foreseen:

  • Improve health and livelihood of farming families who live below poverty line by improving food security, developing new income generating activities which are gender sensitive, and guaranteeing them a safe home;
  • Increase the participation of the civil society in local rural development processes and empower their rights, with particular emphasis on the participation of women associations;
  • Strengthen the capacity and structure of local governments and regional institutions of the five municipalities to manage sustainable development in the context of Development Councils.

The beneficiary of the program are: (i) 2.600 families living below subsistence, spread over 50 communities, (ii) 500 families who produce agriculture surpluses and the population living in the 5 municipalities, (iii) state institutions (municipal, provincial and national) and the civil society organizations

last updated:  Tuesday, July 9, 2013