Ana Ceto Chàvez is an Indigenous woman leader from the Ixil region of El Quiche, Guatemala. She has been a vigorous advocate for Indigenous communities’ rights since she was young. As a young Indigenous girl growing up during the Civil War in Guatemala, Ana experienced firsthand the genocide and violence committed against Indigenous communities. Many of her family members and neighbors were victims of violence and displaced as a result of the genocide.
Today, Ana serves as the Coordinator of MUIXIL, an organization that promotes and defends the human rights of Indigenous women and their communities. MUIXIL is composed of 360 Ixil women survivors of the genocide. Ana leads 45 women in the Ixil Women’s Weaving Collective, which creates a sustainable source of income for their families.
In addition, she recently obtained her degree in Legal and Social Sciences from the University of San Carlos in Guatemala. She is the first Indigenous women in her community to receive a law degree. This is a crucial step to open up political and legal spaces for other women like her and for Indigenous women in her community who have no access to the legal justice system.
Ana has been vital in advocating and demanding restitution and recognition from the Guatemalan government for the genocide committed against the Indigenous community. She also engages women in her community to actively participate in civic and political activities and assists them in getting recognition of their human rights. This not only empowers the women in her community but increases Indigenous women’s representation.
At the international level, Ana has represented MUIXIL before the International Human Rights Committee of the UN and participated in the FIMI Global Leadership School for Indigenous Women.