Featured Project: Traditional Medicine Project in Honduras // August 23rd, 2011

We have a new project this year in Honduras that both recovers lost traditional-medicine knowledge and provides community members with the medical attention they need.

Partner: The Coordinating Association of Rural Women of La Paz (COMUCAP)
New Partner in 2011
Project Area: Health Awareness
Location: Honduras
Participants: 257 women from 16 communities

The Coordinating Association of Rural Women of La Paz (COMUCAP) is an organization made up of 256 Lenca women farmers from 4 municipalities in the La Paz department in Honduras. COMUCAP was founded in 1993 with the aim of raising awareness of women’s rights, as well as supporting the marketing of their products. COMUCAP contributes to the social, economic, political and cultural development of its members by encouraging their participation in all of the decision-making processes in their communities as well as by providing opportunities to develop their technical, financial and political skills.

The Lenca is the largest indigenous group in Honduras, and most live in the department of La Paz. They have undergone a deep transformation since the Spanish conquest. Although they have undergone acculturation, they have been able to retain many pre-Columbian traditions. Despite this, they have unfortunately lost their native language and their cultural relationship with the land. An example of this is the lack of knowledge of local plants for medicinal purposes.

The most common type of ailments in La Paz are acute respiratory diseases and gastrointestinal disorders. The high cost of medicine, the loss of medicinal plant knowledge, and the lack of basic health services have led to an increase in both respiratory disease and gastrointestinal disorders.

This project will train 257 women from 16 communities in the Marcala, La Paz region of Honduras in the importance and use of medicinal plants. Women will learn to prepare and use 150 different remedies. Thirty-two community representatives will become health promoters at the end of the workshop and will spread their knowledge of traditional remedies throughout their communities.