Basic Information about Guatemala and its Indigenous Population

Where in the world is Guatemala?

Guatemala is one of 7 countries in Central America, which is part of North America consisting of a tapering isthmus running from the southern extent of Mexico to the northwestern portion of South America.

What country is directly to the west of Guatemala?  Can you name the ocean to the south of Guatemala?

Mexico.  The Pacific Ocean.

How many Mayan indigenous languages are spoken today in Guatemala?

There are 25 languages spoken in Guatemala. Spanish is the official and most spoken language. In addition, there are 22 different Mayan languages as well as two other Indigenous languages – Garífuna and Xinca.

Why are the poor not helped by the government in lesser developed countries?

  • Population growth

Developing countries have averaged 2-4% population growth since World War II, which is much faster than in industrializing Europe

  • Corruption

Government officials may prioritize other items like defense or road construction over schools

  • Weak governance

Poor countries have ineffective governance, weak regulatory structures, and little support for small businesses

  • Lack of aid predictability

Aid effectiveness is less than optimal due to lack of aid predictability, coordination issues, and aid fragmentation