Monday, February 28, 2011

Pepperdine with ABC Clinic and water filters

Everyone met for breakfast this morning and then divided into two groups. One went to the regular clinic in Lemoa and the rest of us traveled 2.5 hours to Chuchuca.

Kemmel warned everyone last night that the families enjoy giving visitors coke, breads and different foods as they are visited. It is polite to eat what ever is given to you and we must keep that in mind. Well, as soon as we jumped out of the truck, huge slices of cake and Quiche soft drinks were served to us......before we even started working! The slices of cake were huge but we did not waste it :)

Dan, Gaspar and Juan enjoying their cake...........

After everyone ate as much of their cake as they could, it was divided up on different plates and shared among the children waiting for their consult. Then we gave them the drinks that were left over. They were so happy!!

Pepperdine is pumped to begin their day! They have already breakfast, cake and a Quiche soft drink..........enough sugar for the morning.

Before we left to deliver the water filters, Kemmel explained the process to the members of the congregation so they would understand and also be able to translate to the families. The process went slow.......very, very slow.

We drove to the first homes and Danny jumped into the truck to lower down the filters.

This is the first home we visited today. The students here are Marta and Michaela.

This is Estella and Gabriel with their parents.

This is Bendito and Paula with their mother.

This is how they were heating their water before they drank it.

The students jumped right in and started helping. They washed the containers with soap and water and then used the bleach. This home did not have a pila so they used a hose and would regroup as the hose developed a new leak.

These are the parents of Jacinta and Estelma and the daughters were in school as we visited. They had a beautiful view from their house but were probably the poorest family that we visited. The mother has a baby on her back that is only a few months old and does not appear to be very healthy.

I think a total of six filters were delivered through the day. Another group will return on Friday to continue the distribution.

It was a wonderful day. Lisa and Brian, that remained back at the church building saw 39 patients........most of which are in the ABC Program.

We left Chuchuca and returned to Chichi late. We had dinner and then it was time to say goodnight.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

First K'iche' class and Pepperdine arrives

Today, I started my K'iche' classes. I enjoyed it and the four hours went rather quickly. I have two teachers and they seem good. One will primarily be to teach me conversation and the other one will teach me grammer. I hope to learn a lot and I also wish them the best of luck! I am not the quickest student..............

Lisa, Kemmel and Julie returned with the Pepperdine students this afternoon. We had lunch at the Santo Tomas Hotel and then went to the 6:30 pm worship in Chichi.

It will be a good week and we will have different activities and clinics. Tomorrow, we will have a ABC Clinic in Chuchuca and also deliver water filters. It will be about a 2.5 hour drive with a lot of work ahead........but we are ready!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Clinic in Chuchipaca

We had a great clinic today in Chuchipaca. We had 15 medical patients, 22 dental patients and 4 patients for dental cleaning.

Today, Juan drove to clinic and I have to brag a little on him. There is one turn that in the past, I knew made him nervous. He would put the emergency brake on and slowly release it as he made the turn. Today, he just made the turn as if he had been doing it for years! Without using the emergency brake! He has gained a lot of confidence in his driving and I no longer feel like a nervous mother :)

We announced the new diabetic class that we will have on March 26th. Usually, there are several diabetics in Chuchipaca but as the luck usually goes, today there was only one diabetic patient. That is OK. We still have one more day to announce it and I think we will have a good response to it.

There were two sisters that came today and they both have a history of seizures. Lisa saw them 15 days ago. One, I remember is 29 years old and the other is about 24 years old. They were started on some medicine and since then, neither one has had any seizures. Juan, from the congregation there talked to the mother about the Bible and invited them to worship on Sunday. You never know what might come from opportunities as this.

Another patient was sure that she was four months pregnant. When I tested her, it was negative. When I returned, she was filling Juan in on another story, which totally changed the situation. The moral of that story is, it is always OK to ask the same questions four times just to see if you get the same response each time :)

Tomorrow, Lisa and Kemmel will return with the Pepperdine group. They will be with us for one week. We will have busy clinics and we will also be delivering more water filters in different communities.

Tomorrow, I also begin a K'iche' class.........................I hope that my teacher has a lot of patience.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Clinic in Choacaman IV

Today, the guys and I headed for Choacaman IV. It has been awhile since I was out there so it was good return.

We only had 7 patients so it was a slow day. I took this photo about 20 months ago. This is a very nice couple from Choacaman and this was the day they found out they were pregnant.

Today, the mom returned to the clinic with Joel and he is now eleven months old.

After all of the patients were seen, we went to the fields to do a little tree grafting. Here, Gaspar is grafting a plum branch into a small peach truck.

He then wrapped black plastic around the graft and tied it secure. He used candle drippings to seal the top of the graft closed. He showed me one that he had done 15 days ago and it already has a green bud on it.

When we returned, I walked up to Chichi to print some photos.

Tomorrow, we will have clinic in Chuchipaca. I will talk to the diabetic patients about a class that will be offered in March. Hopefully, we will have a good response to it.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

More water filters!!

Today, we met in Chichi at the office before we went to purchase more water filters.

This is Maury in the new office. It gives her a place to work and also Kemmel a place to do office work. The office will also be a place to store water filters, smokeless-stoves, Bibles and study materials.

We drove three trucks to Santa Cruz to get 142 more water filters. Kemmel and Gaspar stacking the filters as we loaded them on the trucks.

We dropped them off in three different locations and they will be delivered in a few weeks to the families with ABC Children.

When we were finished, Kemmel, Lisa and I were invited to have lunch in Mactzul VI with one of the families. They were very gracias with their food and hospitality. It was an enjoyable time.

Today was a good day and we are a step closer to getting more families provided with clean water.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Class in Lemoa

Today, we had class in Lemoa. As we were waiting for the class to begin, I was talking to some of the dental patients. These two little girls had just been in for their check-up. They told me that they brush their teeth three times a day.

Our class today was on the nervous system. Lisa talked about the brain and the spinal cord and different injuries that can occur. As usual, we broke into three groups to discuss the information in more detail. Lisa went from group to group answering questions.

Students getting ready to discuss their material.

Another group preparing to answer their set of questions.

One student wanted to get more information. Can you tell those are drawings of a brain and a spinal cord?

Last minute discussion before lunch.

Today, one of the members from Mactzul VI came to see Lisa before class. His reason for consult went very nicely with class. He had been riding in the back of a truck and when he turned around, his head hit a pole. Thank goodness that he did not have a severe head injury and only needed a few stitches.

There were 29 students in class today. Several students turned in reading assignments from the class last month.

Josefina's mom had surgery this morning and we heard that all went well. We are very thankful for that.

After class, we spent a couple of hours talking about the plans for the next few weeks. We will have several college groups down during their spring break. We will have a group here from Pepperdine University, Abilene Christian University and Harding University. We pray that they all have safe travels and that their time here is enjoyable.

Tomorrow, some of us will continue with the water filter project. We will pick up more water filters and prepare to distribute them while the students are here.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Returning to Chichi and hospital visits

This morning I returned to Chichi. I wanted to stop and get a cup of coffee for the road but the place I wanted to stop was not open yet.

When I walked down the street to my house, I heard my name being called. They were having a birthday party and wanted me to come in and have a piece of cake. The little girl in the middle, it is her 9th birthday.

She wanted another photo taken with her friends.

I will get these photos copied and take them to her.

I went to Quiche to visit Josefina's mom. I went to the wrong hospital and then realized it when I was trying to find which room she was in. I then did not have a lot of time to walk, so I took a tuk tuk to the other hospital.

She was alone so I sat with her until Josefina and Marcos arrived. We talked about her surgery being tomorrow and that being nervous is normal and part of the process. Please pray for her and the medical staff. The visitation is only one hour, so I left so she would have time with her children.

On my way out, I met some of the people from the Mactzul I church They were coming in to visit the gentleman that we saw in clinic in February 15th. He was the patient that was in the back of the pick-up and had been sick for 20 days. I said I would tag along for a few minutes and visit the family.

The patient looked so much better and it was determined that he did have a bad kidney infection. The family said the physicians want him to have a another ultrasound and that he may be able to go home in a week. They asked that we pray, so we knelt by his bed and prayed.

Tomorrow, we will have class in Lemoa. It will be a good day and one full of information.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Pana with a view..........

This morning I went to Quiche for worship.

I saw Josefina's sister-in law and she told me that Josefina's mom was still in the hospital. She has been there for a few days so I will plan on visiting her tomorrow.

I stopped and had Celso cut my hair and then I was on my way to Lake Atitlan. I had the urge to find a good book to read, sit in the sun and check out a hotel that I had heard about.

My travel was without any problem and I was at the lake by 2 pm. I stopped at the used book store and continued down the street. I know, I am probably the last person in the world to hear about those Kindle Books but I think I will have one soon. All of the reviews I have read are good and the people that bring them down, love them! So, I think I will get one........

I had wanted to check out this hotel by the lake. I asked the gentleman if he had a room and he said yes. He then asked if I wanted a room without a view or with a view. I said that I wanted a room-with a view of course.

We walked upstairs and then he moved a chair over to the room he was going to give me, tossed it down and said something like,"Here is your room with a view!" I almost laughed when I looked up.

I had a late lunch on the lake and then went to watch some T.V. Yes, Law and Order SVU was on................3 episodes in a rows!! I loved every episode but Katy was not with me this time as she had been the last two weekends so I did not have anyone to talk to during the commercials. So, I read during the commercials and then died when I realized it was after midnight!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Work hazards of deliveries............

Kemmel and I drove to Mactzul to meet everyone this morning. We continued with delivering the water filters in Mactzul V with Tomas and Maury. This was the first home we visited today. Diego is in the blue and green shirt.

We drove down the road to the next area and Tomas told us we would have to walk across a small bridge. Going across it the first time, I was just concerned with getting across. I heard Kemmel say, "Sheri, you can do it! There are two planks!" He just does not realize I am afraid of heights and there was no water in the river to break my fall..... on the return trip, I pulled out the camera for some photos :)

This is Pedro and Josefina Sucuqui Ordonez.

The father of Pedro and Josefina died a few months ago of congestive heart failure. He was a patient of Lisa's and the family was very appreciative of the care that he received.

This is Tomas Riquiac Marroquin.

This is the family of Rosa, Cristine and Carlos Marroquin Calel. As you can see, sometimes he numbers of names and people do not add up. There may be some children in the family who are not ABC Children, some of the children may be in school and sometimes there may be multiple families living together. So, the more people in the photo, the happier everyone is!

This is Felix in the blue and green shirt.

After lunch, Lisa was finished with her patients so we divided into two groups to finish the deliveries. I gave her one of the sticks we had found. She thought it was to fight off the dogs but I explained to her how we walk up and down, through the corn fields and over the pastures to the houses and a walking stick comes in handy!

This is Hector, in the brown shirt. His sister Karina is in school.

This is the Riquiac Garcia family. Tomas is in the purple shirt, Micaela is standing next to her mom and Juan is standing to the left of Tomas.

This is Edwin Yacon Leon.

This was the last filter to be delivered today. Anastasia is to the far left and Sebastian is wanting to be the first person to drink from the filter.

Now, all of the families in Mactzul V have water filters in their homes. We visited each home, taught them how to maintain the filter and asked if they had any questions.

As with any project, maintenance and follow-up are important. As odd as it may seem for in the United States, many homes here do not use Clorox. Many households do not use it because they can not afford it. As you have been able to see by the living conditions, Clorox may be an additional expense the family may not be able to afford. For his community, the Mactzul V church has offered to buy Clorox for the families that can not afford it, especially the widows.

The water filters are a step in preventive care. We hope to see a decrease in illnesses in the ABC Children and their families.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Let the clean water flow...............

Kemmel and Manuel looking over the information of the filters. Each family was taught how to put the filter together and then how to maintain it. Instead of drinking water out of their pila or having to boil their water, they will now have clean water.

There was more construction going on inside of Sebastian's house. The previous part of the house was washed away with the storm, Agatha, last year.

Kemmel teaching Sebastian's daughter how to maintain the filter. The filter is good for one year. At that time, you only purchase a new filter, you do not puchase a new container.

Juan and Diego are ABC Students and their father is Sebastian.

Candelaria's mom with their new filter.

Selvin's mom with their filter.

Armando with his parents and their filter.

Evelyn's mom cleaning their filter.

This is Evelyn and her mom with their filter.

This is Sandra and her mom with their water filter.

This is the Yacon Yacon family. All of the children were in school so we visited with the parents.

Irma and Jesica, on the far left are in the ABC program. Jesica sat on the porch writing her numbers as we visited with the family.

This is the Garcia Cuin family.

This is Tomas' family....... his wife Juana and sons Everaldo and Israel.

This was the last filter that we delivered for the day. This family name is Ircac Ajanel.

When we were in all of the homes today, we noticed how very clean they were. No, they did not have a lot of things but they take very good care of what they have. There was not any trash in the homes or food sitting around on the tables.

Tomorrow, we will deliver the other half of water filters to Maxtzul V. It will be another exciting day.