Alejandra is 1 year old and the youngest of sixteen children! Her mother is currently pregnant with baby number 17. The oldest five children are married and no longer live in the same house. Alejandra and her siblings live with their parents in a one room concrete house with a tin roof and a cement floor. Alejandra’s father rents a plot of land and everyone in the family helps to plant and harvest corn, squash, beans, herbs and yucca. Their monthly income is only about $200. Alejandra is severely malnourished – to the point where her hair is falling out – and has anemia. This family desperately needs the help of a sponsor to get Alejandra healthy!
If you are interested in helping out Alejandra and her family, please sign up today
Yesterday and today we continue our Well Child visits, as well as our regular clinic visits. Dr. Kwan Kew left this morning to reutrn home, and we are grateful for the service she gave us these two weeks. The team has loved collaborating with her while working in the Clinic.
A special shout-out today to Kerry whose duty it has been all week to get blood samples from the clinic from Child Sponsorship kids. Its a hard job to prick kids fingers, but as Kerry says, the data is important and helps the team know if the child's diet has enough iron.
Along with the Well Child visits UMD always creates public health education presentations to present to PID's patients. This year there were nine amazing posters covering a variety of topics: including breastfeeding, Zika, hypertension...and many others. The students presented the posters to groups of patients and many times the presentations spurred questions and discussions related to the health topics.
is almost two months old and is an only child. His mother is 19 years old and
extremely poor. She did not have any prenatal control during her pregnancy and
Cristian was born at home without any medical care. Cristian and his mom live
with her parents in a one room wooden shack with a dirt floor and a tin roof.
They don’t have running water, electricity or a bathroom and use a nearby
river. His grandmother works planting sugar cane and her small salary supports
4 people living in the house. Cristian was born with an unknown syndrome and
will most likely suffer from developmental delays. To start supporting Cristian, visit our sponsorship page: http://www.pidonline.org/programs/guatemala/child-sponsorship-guatemala
Today the team saw yet more Well Child patients, bringing the total this week to 233! Shout out to Jane who has been the Well Child form mastermind this week, keeping the influx of patients very organized.
During the day the some of the nursing students and Shelley also did an EKG for a little girl who needed a referral for her cardiac problem. Now we can send her to the receiving clinic with an EKG in hand to supplment the referral.
Tamara and Samuel conducted a Sickle Cell info session this morning, and afterwards we presented Samuel with a certificate for his expertise in Sickle Cell education. Another full day and we look forward to tomorrow.
Yesterday I visited the construction students in Canaan at the work site, and was also able to see Mr. Thomas and his family in their new house! To those of you who worked on his house, he sends a big thank you. They are all moved in and they seem really happy. They lived 25 years in Cite Soleil. Mr. Thomas can describe the indignity and lack of safety of living there. Needless to say they were in good spirits in their home in Canaan. :)
Today the team visited a local church and had a day out on an excursion. They are back safe at PID and resting up for another full day of Well Child visits and clinic appointments tomorrow.
The first day went really well for the team. They saw 88 kids from PID's child sponsorship program today for Well Childs check up's, well over 100 patients in the regular clinic, and the construction students came back from Canaan sweaty, dusty and tired. So all in all a successful day!
At the debrief meeting tonight several of the nurses shared with the nursing students many words of encouragement about working in the medical field. For many of the students, today was the first day they had ever seen such a high number of patients with a lack of food, water or access to medical care. One student described watching a two year old boy at the work sight drink an enormous glass of water that she gave him as if it was the only water he had had all day. His intense thirst broke her heart because clean water is so readily accessible back in the United States - and dyhydration is so dangerous, especially for children. Encounters like this are hard but they certainly open your eyes to the worlds' problems. People with such limited resources are the ones we are trying to help with service trips- both medical ones as well as construction.
Orientation meeting/ the students going on two hours of sleep!
The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth team has arrived, along with Tamara and Holly who will join Kwan Kew in seeing sick patients in the clinic. The team members are settled in for the night after a long day of lugging suitcases of toys, soap, toothbrushes and medical supplies through the airports. This week the doctors and nurses are going to do hundreds of Well Child Chek-up's for the kids in our Child Sponsorship program. The nursing students will shadow the medical professionals and help evaluate the kids' health. Others will be continuing on the house in Canaan. This team comes every year and its always a great week!