Increase the Self-Sufficiency of the Poor

Support impoverished families struggling to earn a living

Mere material aid helps alleviate suffering, but it can only be a temporary solution to the issue of extreme poverty. It’s a bandage over a bullet wound. For lasting change, the cycle that produces generations of poverty must be broken.

As a Catholic ministry, we are devoted to breaking that cycle of poverty through integral human development and the transformative power of the Gospel. This material and spiritual approach to tackling poverty empowers the poor to become self-sufficient while providing the lasting hope and joy to be found in Christ Jesus.

Guatemala is one such area where Cross Catholic Outreach is committed to empowering the poor and improving their material and spiritual well-being. Poverty here is so severe, particularly in rural areas, that many men feel compelled to leave the country in search of jobs and opportunity. This leaves women and children alone in the attempt to survive on subsistence farming. Earning a living is difficult and contributes to the overall cycle of poverty.

By empowering the poor we can help impoverished individuals attain economic independence to provide for their families and communities.

Planting Seeds of Hope in Santa Rosa

Although poor farming communities surround the Diocese of Santa Rosa de Lima in southern Guatemala, many of its farmers do not have the skill or resources to provide beyond the immediate needs of their families. Families face extreme hardships and even famine. In fact, one in two children in Guatemala suffers from chronic malnourishment.

Father Raúl Monterroso noticed an opportunity to empower the community and share the Word of God with an agriculture program. Cross Catholic Outreach has teamed up with Fr. Raúl help farmers attain better yields and stimulate the local economy. Participant families receive seeds, seedlings and fertilizer as well as instruction in proven agricultural techniques in crop management and environmental conservation. Farming, like our other empowerment programs, helps poor families move from survival mode to economic independence.

The Cycle of Extreme Poverty

More than half of all Guatemalans live below the poverty line. Poverty is so severe that many men feel compelled to leave the country in search of jobs and opportunity.

This leaves women and children in precarious situations. Some rent small parcels of land and try to survive on subsistence farming, but the small profits are usually be turned over to the landowners, contributing to the overall cycle of poverty.

Help Now

Those suffering under extreme poverty need your help. They are trapped in a vicious cycle with no resources and no hope. As opposed to simply providing a one-time gift of material aid, your support of programs that empower the poor is a gift that keeps on giving; you contribute to the material and spiritual transformation of an entire community, helping struggling families to attain self-sufficiency and put food on the table for their children.

Your commitment to economic development will empower the poor in Santa Rosa and other poverty-stricken communities around the world.

Answer the Call

Learn how you can engage in projects serving the poor and their communities around the world.

Cross Catholic Outreach

Our mission is to mobilize the global Catholic Church to transform the poor and their communities materially and spiritually for the glory of Jesus Christ. Your gift empowers us to serve the poorest of the poor by channeling life-changing aid through an international network of dioceses, parishes and Catholic missionaries. This cost-effective approach helps break the cycle of poverty and advance Catholic evangelization.


Proceeds from this campaign will be used to cover any expenditures incurred through June 30, 2022, the close of our ministry’s fiscal year. In the event that more funds are raised than needed to fully fund the project, the excess funds, if any, will be used to meet the most urgent needs of the ministry.