Invisible Threads: Addressing Migration by Investing in Women and Girls

Credit: Population Council

In recent years a significant proportion of migrants at the US southern border have come from Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras. The large number of migrants from Central America has prompted the US government to seek to better understand and address the root causes of migration from the region, including through its foreign assistance. The Population Institute published a report in 2022 entitled “Invisible Threads: Addressing the Root Causes of Migration from Guatemala by Investing in Women and Girls,” examining the factors that are driving migration from Guatemala, specifically that of women and girls. Many migrants seek greater economic security for themselves and their families, but the burden of economic insecurity is heavily borne by women.

Guatemala has the lowest proportion of women participating in the paid labor market in Latin America. Women in Guatemala, particularly Indigenous and Afro-descendant, also face educational and occupational inequities, creating “glass ceilings” that limit their ability to progress. Climate change also plays a role in people‚Äôs decisions to migrate from the region. Crime and violence, demographic pressures and limited investment in sexual and reproductive health are other factors driving migration.

Summit grantees FUNDAECO, WINGS, and Population Council collaborated with Population Institute on the report. It highlights innovative programs across Guatemala that demonstrate how targeted investments can yield benefits that cut across many of the root causes of migration.


Invisible Threads: Addressing the Root Causes of Migration from Guatemala by Investing in Women and Girls

Partner Links:

Population Council Guatemala