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“Facing Water Sources”

Location: Nebaj, Quiché, Guatemala

Size: 220 acres

Population: 61 families / 338 families

established: 2004

Ended Agros Support: 2011

The family of Don Domingo Cruz came to live in this place about two hundred years ago. After dividing the land among his brothers, it was named Batzchocolá, meaning “facing water sources” because of the many nearby waterfalls. During the civil war, Batzchocolá was ravished; homes and crops were burned, animals were stolen and several family members were killed, leading many to abandon the community and flee to live in Amacchel near Chajul (about 10 hours away by foot). When the war ended, everything changed; the people of Batzchocolá can now live in freedom and peace.

Batzchocolá spent two years negotiating with the Guatemalan government Land Fund to help them purchase farm land near their homes. In December 2003, they finally received title to their land. While selling coffee together with neighboring Agros village Trapichitos, Batzchocolá was introduced to Agros staff, and soon after asked for help learning better agricultural techniques and strengthening the development of their economy.