Oct 30, 2017

We're making some incredible strides ...

Clinica Verde's youth baseball team
Clinica Verde's youth baseball team
Clinica Verde is making incredible strides in caring for its community. Because of you, we've been able to accomplish so much. With your generous help, in 2017 we:
  • Increased our outreach program, providing care to 10 new rural communities in areas of high need
  • Completed agreements with local government to cover the public health needs of students 
  • Trained 22 prenatal facilitators and expanded our prenatal program to 5 rural areas in the department of Boaco
  • Prepared 180 women for healthy pregnancy and care of their newborns (amazing!)
  • Educated 300 adolescents from 10 rural communities about subjects such as gender equity, teen pregnancy prevention, life plan, and violence prevention
  • Provided primary healthcare to 300 adolescents and their families, including general health evaluation, blood pressure screening, body mass index screening, optometry evaluation, provision of glasses, de-worming prophylaxis, and multivitamins 
  • Trained 42 adolescents as peer counselors in subjects related to sexual and reproductive health
  • Designed and planned for the building of two health posts following Clinica Verde's model of compassionate care and evidence-based design, and are training public health workers in bio-intensive gardening and prenatal care 
  • Deepened our relationship with the Nicaraguan Ministry of Health (MINSA) and the Ministry of Education, implementing our teen program to prevent teen pregnancy and to increase attitudinal changes towards gender
As with many small charitable organizations, fundraising continues to be a challenge. We are incredibly grateful to you for helping us continue our work.

When you donate to Clinica Verde, you provide:
  • Support for our greatest resource – our amazing staff who make the work of Clinica Verde possible. All of our staff work hard each day to provide healthcare, education and support to over 10,000 patients per year. Read more below about one of our exceptional nurses, Yessica Solano. 
  • The safe operation of our facility. Our roof is currently damaged by water and leaking significantly. The cost to fix our roof is $4,000.  
  • Transportation to reach and meet the needs of the rural poor, who otherwise would not be able to get to Clinica Verde. 
  • Pediatric medications for our patients. Of the $36,000 in medications that we purchase annually, $15,000 is for children.
Many thanks again for your kind and generous hearts!
Members of Clinica Verde's teen club.
Members of Clinica Verde's teen club.
Aug 8, 2017

A little bit goes a long way

It is often said that a little bit goes a long way. But when we are working to address global challenges like healthcare, a simple and impactful reminder is a beautifully welcomed gift.

Recently, we received word about a particular case in our Boaco, Nicaragua clinic. Miguel, a 4-year-old patient, was in dire need of surgery to save his vision. He and his family walked over four hours to seek help at the clinic to find out what was wrong with Miguel’s eyes.

The loving staff at Clinica Verde are incredibly creative and collaborative – especially when it comes to finding help for their patients. The staff reached out to the Ophthalmology Nicaragua Foundation, and had Miguel see a specialist in the capital city of Managua – a long journey for Miguel and his family. They learned that his vision could be saved with a surgery process that will have 2 parts; the first surgery will remove the lens of his eyes and the second will implant intraocular lenses. But due to complications in the condition of Miguel’s eyes and because he is a child, it was imperative we use general anesthesia and provide special care. Unfortunately, the program could not cover the costs for what’s considered “special surgery.” Miguel’s family lives in extreme poverty – if we didn’t get him into this surgery, he would soon be blind.

The cost of Miguel’s vision was less than most household’s monthly grocery bill. Yet it would provide this 4-year-old boy with a lifetime of vision.

So we reached out on our social media channels – and through our network of caring hearts like you – to make this surgery happen for him. In less than a few hours, the money was raised and Miguel was scheduled for surgery. “There could not be a more deserving use of that money,” one donor who manages an advertising department shared. “Praying for this family that they get the help they need,” shared another real estate agent who jumped in to help right away. A young barista just getting on her feet donated the final amount needed to reach our goal for Miguel’s surgery, and shared “Keep doing awesome things!!”

And we will. We are dedicated and steadfast, and with the help of loving hearts like yours we will bring health and hope to children and families living in poverty just like Miguel. It is important to remember that sometimes a little bit truly does go a long way.

May 10, 2017

The Importance of Community Engagement

Adrienne Clermont with CV Nurse Yessica Solano
Adrienne Clermont with CV Nurse Yessica Solano

At Clinica Verde, we’re lucky to have talented professionals and students serve in internship positions. Below, a couple of posts by current intern Adrienne Clermont, a research associate at John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

As a public health professional who is getting ready to change careers and start medical school next year, I wanted to gain some clinical experience and learn more about the practice of being a doctor. Because my specialty is international health, I wanted my first clinical experience to be in a developing country – and I could think of no better place than Clinica Verde to see how holistic primary and preventive care can be done well in a very low-income setting. I am excited to be here for three weeks and to share some of my experiences here in writing!

Working as a public health researcher dealing with maternal and child health in low-income countries, I’m familiar with the major challenges faced by Nicaragua and other similar countries. However, my work has always been done from afar – reviewing spreadsheets of data on my computer in the U.S., or holding training workshops in the capital cities of various countries. Spending time in Boaco with the staff of Clinica Verde has brought many of these issues to life in front of my eyes. Rather than analyzing statistics on Nicaragua’s fertility, mortality, and morbidity rates, I’ve had the chance to see pregnant women and families with children who come to the clinic for care. Rather than reading research studies on the effectiveness of antenatal care visits in reducing pregnancy complications, I’ve had a chance to sit in on those visits while shadowing the clinic’s gynecologist.

Clinica Verde’s staff have been helpful and welcoming, and seeing the work of the doctors, nurses, and administrators here has me very excited about the path I am about to start down in training to become a medical professional. I look forward to learning more over the next two weeks of my time here!

• • •

Today I found myself, unexpectedly, marching in a parade in the small village of Santa Lucia. It was not an activity I’d planned to be part of my shadowing experience at Clinica Verde, but it was a fun surprise that speaks to the great relations that the clinic has with its surrounding communities.
I had gone to Santa Lucia with Yesica, the nurse who leads the teen education and outreach programs at the clinic, to visit a primary school in Santa Lucia that was celebrating its anniversary. Many schools have annual celebrations like this one, which included a mass in the local church, election of a “king and queen” of each grade or section in the school, and a parade through the center of town, complete with the school’s marching band and drum corps. After the parade, we returned to the schoolyard, where festivities continued with lunch and (super adorable) dance performances by students from each class. Yesica had been invited to attend the celebration as a guest of honor, because of her past work with students from this school and many others in the TeenSmart program. So when Yesica, two of her teen peer counselors, and I showed up to attend the celebration and pass out fliers advertising Clinica Verde, we were told not just to watch – but to jump in and join the parade!
I had the chance last week to sit in on one of the group discussions for teens, facilitated by Yesica and another clinic staff member, David. On the day of my observation, the topic was bullying. I listened as the youth participants shared stories about instances of bullying they had witnessed in their schools (and online – not surprising considering how wildly popular Facebook is among young people here). The facilitators skillfully guided them in discussing how those instances made them feel, and what they might do differently if they witnessed bullying in the future.
The teen education program is just one of several important community outreach projects that are taking place at Clinica Verde. I have also had the chance to join Dr. Leal on his community outreach visits, which take place several days per week and provide mobile health services to schools, retirement homes, and rural communities surrounding the clinic. The doctor’s patience and kindness when discussing important medical issues with patients in a poor, rural village we visited was truly inspiring. Finally, I was also able to visit a casa materna (maternal waiting home, where women from rural areas can go to stay near the hospital when they are expecting to deliver soon) with the clinic director and learn about how the prenatal nutrition education program may soon be extended there. All of these experiences have shown me the importance of community engagement and the many ways in which Clinica Verde is becoming an important service provider, not just for patients who come to the clinic for care, but to all of the surrounding communities.
The Santa Lucia Parade
The Santa Lucia Parade
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