More Progress Thanks To Your Contributions
Dear Friend of our Nicaraguan community,
2009 has been a very positive year for our fundraising efforts. It started with a party in Managua, our traditional local fundraising event where the famous artist Mario Sacasa performed live for us, including some songs from his new album.
We also did a big educational event with the community and some volunteers in the area; Rancho Santana tourists and some of your fellow donors were able to interact with the community and enjoy a nice afternoon. It was wonderful to see over 150 children participate in all kinds health education games and contests.
Our yearly Board meeting was very gratifying. New board members joined us and our operational manager was able to present the accomplishments for 2008.
Some of the highlights are:
- 316 patients received completely free health care services and more than 8,900 patients received first aid and emergency healthcare.
- We did 638 vaccinations: antipolio, MR, DT, Vitamin A
- Treated 812 children for parasite infections at the schools, Limon1 , Sofia Sanarrucia, Emanual Mongalo, Escuala Iguana.
- Implemented a campaign for cavity preventive care for 433 children in the area.
- Developed a campaign to eliminate mosquito deposits.
- Fumigated 351 homes, co-sponsored by MINSA and Rancho Santana.
- Subcontracted dental services to Odontologa Reyna Vanesa Ortiz, a Rivas-based provider who visits twice per month. Approximately 2 -5 patients receive services during each visit.
- Coordinated and implemented PROGRAMA SILLA DE RUEDAS, a wheelchair program where together with the Wheelchair Foundation, Rancho Santana bought 110 wheelchairs to donate to the community, hospitals, and other institutions.
- Established a partnership with the Instituto Juan XXIII program organized by the University of UCA to provide the clinic and the community with discount medicines. The current cost of medicines sold by the clinic is 40% to 60% less than those sold by other pharmacies in Rivas.
For 2009, one of our biggest accomplishments was the partnership with FIRMC (Foundation for International Medical Relief of Children), which brings volunteers with varied medical backgrounds to the clinic on a regular basis to train and support our medical team and provide public healthcare to the community. The volunteers have been enjoying their experience and the community welcomes these new young and educational groups.
Thanks to the money and supplies you donated we were able to re-paint the clinic and buy new equipment, including two examination tables (as you can see in the pictures below) and an oxygen tank that has been very important for patients in critical conditions. This type of equipment seems a very basic and logical thing to have, but we were only able to obtain it recently thanks to your contributions. Click here to donate for more equipment.
Even though we’ve made a lot of progress this year, your donations are still so much in need. Our current operational budget runs about $130,000 per year. This covers the salaries of the doctors, nurses and the operational team, maintenance, new equipment, and the capital necessary to make this clinic run successfully. We know that many of you have been very generous in the past. Nonetheless, we need your constant support to save more lives and continue to bring basic healthcare needs to this remote rural community.
In April we had a visit from a group of doctors and nurses who were attending the Surfer’s Medical Association Conference. They are part of Surfer’s Medical Association, and the Rotary International Clinics and Flying Doctors.
This was a fantastic team composed by Mr. Bill Jones, Gustavo Gonzales, Neal Harris and Pete Lamothe. Among them we had an emergency room nurse who gave us very important tips and ideas about how to enhance our emergency care. Mr. Jones, who is an ophthalmologist, donated tons of prescription glasses and sun protection glasses for the community. Please click here to read their thank you letter.
We also want to mention the conclusion of our big project called The Wheelchair Program that we implemented in 2008. Thanks to the Wheelchair Foundation led by Eva Brook and the Rotary Club of West Sacramento led by Eric Ketelsen, we were able to bring 110 wheelchairs to our community. It was a huge challenge because of government permits and logistics, but at the end we prevailed. There is so many people to thank but I prefer to do it through these photos below taken of the beneficiaries, which speak for themselves. We also want to thank Mr. Alan Vilchez and his wife Miriam Maliaños who coordinated the ceremony and selected the final beneficiaries.
This is only a very brief report of many things we have been working on. We would love for you to get more involved with our many projects at the clinic and in the surrounding community. Many of our readers and donors are contacting their friends and co-workers for donations, equipment, and other necessities. We welcome you to be part of the Volunteer program with FIRMC or directly with us. It is important that we all continue our efforts to make this project viable for the next 20 years and beyond. We have been making a huge impact in the area and we are proud to include you. More than 9,000 patients per year and more than 3,000 children benefit from our services. We want to continue serving and helping them.
Now that you know what we have been doing with your donations, let me tell you what we still need. Many things are on our wish list but here are the top priorities:
- We constantly need cash to make this clinic a viable project. The current budget for 2009 is around US$130,000. We can send you the budget so you can see how urgent we need those contributions.
- We are in the process of finding funds to expand our location and build two more rooms. One for a mini surgery room and one for medical examination. This second room also will give some privacy for gynaecologic exams and other procedures.
- We are planning to create an outreach program where we will get an ambulance that will go to the most remote areas in Nicaragua. We are in the process f procuring this ambulance from recent contributions however we’ve learned that the Nicaraguan government will not permit the import of a vehicle older than 6 years, which is it more expensive: $32,000.
- The Outreach program is called Medicina A Distancia (Outreach Medicine Program). We will go to different areas with a doctor and a nurse and provide medical consultation and a mobile pharmacy at a very low cost. This program requires approximately $4,000 per month to run. It is a much-needed service but requires cash to start it.
- We need US$4,000 to pay for the shipping of a 20-ft foot container filled with equipment and some repository materials, which a recent retired Doctor is giving to us…
There are many other needs, and you certainly can help us to achieve them.
I want to thank you again and hope we can have many more news for you in our next communications. Again thank you for your generosity.
Enjoy your summer and we hope to hear from you soon.
Julia C. Guth
The Roberto Clemente- Santa Ana Health Clinic
P.S. A special thanks goes to our hardworking Clinic team: Dr. Julio Flores, Juan Vargas, Marta Cerda, Manuel Urbina, Keylin Rodriguez, Martina Obando, Christina Garcia, Myles Norin, Alan Vilchez, Alvaro Meneses, Antonio Granadosm Fermndo Somarriba and all the team at Rancho Santana that help us to make this project a reality.
© THE ROBERTO CLEMENTE – RANCHO SANTANA CLINIC — a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.
105 West Monument Street, Baltimore MD 21201
USA Telephone : 410-223-2630
Nicaragua Telephone: 011-505-8877413 (spanish only)