Gisela is a former Helping Hands student and now a dentist. She graduated in 2015 and now has two offices, in La Paz and in El Alto. Gisela did more specialty training in Orthodontics and Periodontology in Brazil and Pharmacology in Peru. She continues to do further study in Dental Implants at a local university while she works at her offices with her husband who is also a dentist. Gisela attends to Helping Hands students in her offices and has given several talks to our students about dental care and hygiene. Congratulations Gisela and thanks for giving back!!!
We are pleased to introduce you to Anel from the Universidad Central, who has just defended her degree project in Physiotherapy and Kinesiology with a score of 85%. Her project was about the aftercare needed for children recovering from club foot corrective procedures. Congratulations Anel!!
In the month of June, Claudia, a former Helping Hands volunteer from 2012, visited the office and filled us in on her working experience at the German Embassy in Washington, DC. So exciting to see her again and hear of her adventures. Congratulations to you, too, Claudia!!
OUR STUDENTS VOLUNTEER
Helping Hands promotes volunteer service among our students and encourages them to be creative in their choice of service. Their written reports about this volunteer experience are very positive and they look forward to volunteering again in September. Some students served hot drinks and food to the homeless while others visited the elderly at nursing homes. Some groups of students cleaned up their streets or parks and others fed abandoned street dogs. One of our boys, Alfredo, is very involved in giving classes to school children about caring for the environment.
OUR STUDENTS WORK
Most of our students work at a part time job, just on the weekends or over the vacation, to help pay for their personal expenses, food or rent. Helping Hands helps to cover their educational expenses, but they must take care of many other living expenses on their way to becoming independent. In the month of June our students sent us pictures of themselves at work. We admire their tenacity and determination to improve their lives.
24 of our most needy students and their families benefit from our supplementary food baskets each month in order to improve their nutrition. We stress high protein, mineral and vitamin foods such as powdered milk, quinoa, oats, lentils, peanuts, api (maize flour), iodized salt, oil, and eggs, as well as fresh vegetables and fruits such as swiss chard, carrots, turnips, beets, oranges and bananas.
In April, we had the first face-to-face workshop of the year, “Good Periodontal Health”. Dr. Gisela spoke to our elementary and high school students about the importance of good dental health, and we were all happy to be back together in person. Everyone received a new toothbrush and presents for the birthday boys and girls.
Our May workshop, "Social Media Security", was given by Roger, a systems expert. Our elementary and high school students learned of the dangers of social media and how to keep safe. They learned about the danger signs, the filters, the different risks they may be exposed to, and how to react to them. Because it was May, we also celebrated Mother’s Day which is May 27th in Bolivia!!
In June, we had a special meeting at the Helping Hands office with our 32 new students. After two years of virtual meetings it was wonderful to meet face to face. We began with two activities to break the ice, and then reviewed the rules and regulations of Helping Hands. We are trying to bring our students together again as much as possible. They are all at different levels of advancement and in different careers, so there are many opportunities for collaboration and learning.
Helping Hands functions, thanks so very much to the collaboration of our friends and donors. At any time, donations can be made to either of these two links.
WE INVITE YOU TO WATCH OUR LATEST VIDEO ABOUT OUR STUDENT LUCY WHO LIVES IN THE ALTIPLANO.