Flash Cards Voz MayaJane Custer fell in love with Mexico on her first trip, in 1967. She was 14 and had never left the US west coast.  “I fell in love with the warm water, tropical air, and friendly people,” she explains. “I went back at least once a year every year after that.”

In 2006, after traveling through Quintana Roo, Yucatán, and Campeche with Expedia and the United Nations Foundation to educate local people about the five UNESCO World Heritage sites in the Yucatán, and how to support the local Maya communities whose ancestors not only built these sites, but depend on them for their livelihood, she had an idea.  “It seemed to me that so many travelers come here, but learn so little about the local Maya people,” she says. “I thought, maybe I could find a Maya artist and create fun, educational flashcards, as a simple tool for deepening a foreigner’s understanding of the culture, language, and heritage of the Yucatán.”

Two years later she still hadn’t found a Maya artist.  But she did find John Hillmer, a talented artist who lives part time in Mexico, and only half-jokingly thinks he was a Maya king in a former life. “Together we created VozMaya.”

The result combines beautifully designed large-format cards with beautiful artisitic reproductions of Maya words on one side, and a bite-sized lesson in Maya, Spanish and English on the other. You can play an array of fun, educational games like Lotería Maya. It’s edutainment at its best and contributes funds to local charities. Available at: Kukul Bout’ik near Parque Sta. Lucia; Tienda Gran Museo Mundo Maya; Lawson’s Original Yucatan Excursions; and Hotel Xixim, Celestún.



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