PA students help us to accomplish our goals!
Since our last update to you, the team at Mayanza has been very busy including taking our biggest group of volunteers to Santiago in February. We accomplished many important things while in-country. Here are a few of the highlights.
- We continued our school clinic, where we provide fluoride varnish, oral health screening and supplies, measure height and weight, check hemoglobin levels for anemia and administer a dose of anti-parasite medication. This trip we saw our highest number so far - 601 children over 4 schools! We have analyzed the hemoglobin data over time and continue to see a significant improvement in the decreasing level of anemia over time.
- We were so proud to graduate our first group of women from the year-long Diabetes Prevention Through Lifestyle Modification curriculum! These women formed a support group through exercise and learning about nutrition, stress managment and goal setting. We also held an orientation session for the new group and collected data both pre and post intervention to evaluate our program.
- After careful planning by our team of physician assistants, we implemented the first Family Health Fair at each of the four schools. We educated the community of the schools in nutrition including portion control and culturally competent healthy substitutions, ways to exercise at home, diabetes prevention, dental hygiene and hand washing. We also screened the participants for anemia, measured their height and weight, adminstered anti-parasite medication and daily multivitamins. And for the first time, we partnered with local organizations including Hospitalito Atitlan, Saving Mothers, Pueblo a Pueblo and Tui'k Ruch' Lew that provided education in mental health, women's reporductive health and contraception, nutrition and water filtration and clean burning stoves. Overall, we saw 366 people from the community who received education from each station and were given toothbrushes, toothpaste and soap.
- Finally, at the health fair, we conducted a health related needs assessment. It provided a number of insights of this community and will help us target our programs to the areas that are most needed.
Changes in Reponse to COVID-19
Since the arrival of COVID, the leadership team has pivoted our focus and we are now raising funds for 2 areas of focus. The country has been locked down since March 12 and families who were barely surviving are now without food. Now, we are raising funds to help combat the high rate of malnutrition and have partnered with an organization who can deliver a hot meal for $1USD. In addition, although Santiago does not have the capacity to manage patients with COVID-19, the virus have arrived in the community and the first responders must transport patients to referral centers. We are working with community members to acquire and manufacture medical supplies like gloves, face shields, plastic protective suits and hand sanitizer for distribution to first responders including firefighters, EMTs and medical professionals.
As you can imagine, your help is incredibly needed during this time! Your money goes further in Guatemala and can make a huge impact on the need in this community! Thank you for your generosity in the past and please consider a donation at this time to help protect the first responders and impact the devastating effects of malnutrition on this community.
We saw 601 students this trip - amazing!
Women of the community participated in the Fair.
The school clinics are very well attended.
Our first group to graduate!