The rainy season in Guatemala often plays bad jokes on planned events like weddings and cultural activities. Imagine the cultural event planner taken care of every little detail to have a successful activity outside, maybe at Ermita de la Santa Cruz or at the atrium of the Antigua Compañía de Jesús like in this case and people show up but they look for shelter inside or people don’t show up because of the heavy downpour. Well that’s exactly what happened for the Festival Artes Muy Especiales which main objective was to promote the cultural and educational benefits of the arts for handicapped people. The goal of the Festival of Very Special Arts was to bring awareness and sensitize the general public about the respect and the attention the handicapped people deserved by showing that there are no limitations for them if they are provided with the means to realize their aspirations.
Unfortunately, the turn over was very low while I was there because of the rain. One thing I noticed was the ramps placed at the entrance of the bathrooms which are not normally there. This made me realized how behind we are as a society in Guatemala to be fair and just to all the people. This is especially true for La Antigua Guatemala where there are virtually no ramps for wheelchairs and most sidewalks are uneven. I wonder what happened to La Antigua Guatemala Sin Barreras project, an initiative to remove the barriers posed by uneven sidewalks and the lack of ramps that I profiled before in AntiguaDailyPhoto. Of course, this municipal administration had a Plan de Recuperación de Banquetas, a sidewalk recovery plan which repaired some of the sidewalks so pedestrian can use them without having to invade the cobbled streets, but did not go far enough to accommodate wheel chairs.
Perhaps this will be another election-time campaign promise by the people running for the Mayor’s seat this year. What do you think?
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