Latin America

Griselda's Story: A Brave Survivor Dreams for her Country

GUATEMALA CITY – Griselda* was walking home with her mother and brother from a Mother’s Day celebration at church. Suddenly, a blue car cut in front of the family. A man jumped out, grabbed 13-year-old Griselda, and sped away.

Griselda’s mother was shocked and shouted for help. She flagged down a passing police car, and they drove to a neighborhood notorious for violent crime and gang activity. The blur car was sitting in an empty lot; Griselda was inside.

She had been raped at gunpoint by three men. Two fled by the time the police arrived, and the other man was arrested.

Impunity Ends in Bolivia: Teachers Convicted for Sexually Assaulting Students Avoided Prison for Years

LA PAZ, BOLIVIA – All around the world, school is a place of learning and dreaming. It’s a place where children can reach for opportunities that could alter a family’s future forever.

But for many girls in developing countries, school is a place with threats—the World Health Organization says sexual violence at or on the way to school is common. In fact, according to Human Rights Watch, it’s a main reason girls drop out. The IJM team in Bolivia is working to change this devastating reality.

Silvia’s Case

IJM Guatemala Seeks Justice for Young Mother, Helps Her Find Strength

GUATEMALA CITY – When Iris* speaks about her daughter, she can’t help but smile with pride. At 17 years old, Iris is a young mother.

Her baby was born as a result of rape, but Iris refuses to let that violence define her or her daughter’s life. She says, “[My daughter] gives me the strength to go on and I have the desire to improve my life.”

Living in Fear

IJM Bolivia: Man Sentenced to A Decade in Prison After Confessing to Sexually Abusing Young Sisters

LA PAZ, BOLIVIA – A year after a man broke into his neighbors' home and sexually assaulted 6-year-old Vivi* and her 8-year-old sister, Mery*, he pled guilty and confessed to the violent crime. He was sentenced to a decade in prison in a plea bargain settled on March 7, 2014.

Seeking Justice for Vivi and Mery