Monday, November 9, 2009

Primeros Dias con Primeros Pasos

Here are some photos in and around the clinic where I have been working. The clinic is located right outside the city of Xela, where I live, and every morning my friend, Katie (a Family Nurse Practitioner from Emory, who is volunteering also) and I take the 30 min walk. Its nice on our lungs when it has recently rained here, because when it's dry the 30+ semi- trucks pass and kick up huge clouds of dust. The clinic is run by volunteers, for the most part and I am told that after being started a few years ago, they have sustained themselves almost solely on the contributions of donors and the works of volunteers. On a regular basis, the clinic services primary health care needs, and in addition, they organize traveling medical clinics. These traveling clinics visit the local day care centers, and the doctors and nurse practitioners examine all of the children, distribute needed medicines, soap, and toothbrushes. We are currently conducting these clinics and will be for the rest of this week. I am around for general help and education. After the child meets with the doctor, they come and visit me and we talk about

Jalapa, Guatemala

I partnered up with Iglesia Evangelica Betel in Xela, Guatemala and traveled with some members of their congregation to bring food, clothes and other donations to the town of Jalapa, Guatemala. We traveled for nearly 8 hours and when we arrived, we were greeted warmly by hundreds of people who had lined the streets. Before the trip, I was told that the community that we would be visiting had suffered a series of extreme rain and droughts and that some in this community were in great need. The combination ruined the crops in the village and the people there have felt the strain. The people seemed excited for our arrival, some had made food for all of us, others were in their church clothes but all had huge smiles and warm welcomes. As soon as we arrived and had unloaded all of the food and clothes, we assembled in the large saloon area. Packages of food and clothes were passed out to over 400 families (over 1000 people) and, later, the leaders from the church gave a sermon. It was a wonderful experience to be a part of- delivering aid to those in need. It was most impressive to watch some come to Christ that day- there were almost 10 who converted to Christianity that day. Praise God for such an amazing day!