FAQ


What is Common Hope?

Common Hope is a 501(c)(3) organization providing opportunities in education, health care, housing, and family development for impoverished children and families in Guatemala.

What is Common Hope’s mission?

Common Hope promotes hope and opportunity in Guatemala, partnering with children, families, and communities who want to participate in a process of development to improve their lives through education, health care, and housing.

What are Common Hope’s basic areas of work?

Our work is concentrated in four basic areas: education, health care, housing, and family development. In education, we help a child attend school, and we provide support to schools to enhance the quality of education children receive. In health care, we provide access to affordable health care, and we provide preventive health education. In housing, we provide the opportunity for families to earn new homes, stoves, and utilities like water and electricity. In family development, we provide a social worker for each family, helping them define their goals for the future, and also connecting families with counseling, parenting classes, and job placement services.

How does Common Hope work?

Once a family forms a partnership with us, we require them to actively participate in their own development process—beginning with their child staying in school. We believe that their participation in the process preserves dignity and builds ownership.

With help from Common Hope’s social workers, each family identifies the challenges they want to address and sets goals for themselves. The goals might include building a new house, getting their family dental check-ups, or searching for a new job. The social worker helps the individual family members connect with the right program or activity so that they can begin achieving those goals and improving their lives.

Where does Common Hope work?

Common Hope currently works in 26 communities near Antigua and Guatemala City.

What distinguishes Common Hope’s work?

Common Hope has six distinguishing elements: (1) personal, regular contact with the families we serve; (2) required participation from those we serve; (3) comprehensive and integrated programs; (4) responsible and efficient use of funds; (5) working with whole families; and (6) a long-term commitment to the families we serve.

Why does Common Hope focus on the whole family?

A child’s ability to succeed in school depends in large part on his or her family’s health, safety, and stability. For this reason, in addition to our education program we provide integrated services in health care, housing, and family development to provide the stability children need to be successful.

Can I volunteer?

Common Hope welcomes volunteers at our St. Paul office, in Guatemala, and for various tasks around the country. In St. Paul, volunteers help with things like sorting supplies in the warehouse, translating sponsorship letters, and preparing mailings. In Guatemala, long-term and short-term volunteers help with things like leading classroom activities, sorting supplies in the pharmacy, building homes, and contributing specialized skills. Volunteers in other parts of the U.S. help with things like organizing fundraising events or speaking engagements.

For more information on volunteer opportunities, please visit our volunteer page. You can also contact our volunteer & community liaison via email or at (651) 917-0917.

Does Common Hope have a religious affiliation?

Common Hope welcomes anyone willing to serve the poor, and we serve those living in poverty without regard to religion. Although Common Hope was founded on Christian ideals, we are not affiliated with any particular religion, and we do not proselytize.

Is Common Hope politically involved?

To ensure the safety of our staff and the families served by Common Hope, we are not politically active in the United States or Guatemala.

Does Common Hope accept material donations?

We accept a limited number of items that are needed in Guatemala. Please see our needs list for specific items that can be donated.

What is your donor privacy policy?

Common Hope respects the privacy of those on our mailing list and those visiting our website. The data and information we collect are used only to further our mission. It is our policy to collect and store only personal information that is knowingly provided to us. All personal information you provide is stored on secure servers and Common Hope takes reasonable technical and organizational precautions to prevent loss, misuse or alteration of your personal information.

Our donor list is not for sale. When you join our mailing list or visit our website, your name and mailing information will not be sold or given to other persons or organizations. If you want to be removed from the mailing list or suspect that we have handled your personal information in a manner that doesn’t comply with this privacy statement, please let us know. Contact Us