Pediatric Services in Remote Areas of Argentina

by Sumando Manos Foundation

We’d like to share great news! As part of our Health program, we started working with Dr. Marcelo Wirth, a local medical doctor in Pampa del Indio, Province of Chaco to provide pediatric services to the schools in the area. Dr. Wirth visited several schools which are also part of our nutrition program. The visit was conducted alongside with a Pediatric Dentist who examined and treated the children, as well as educated them and families on proper dental care. During the visits, the doctors checked all the children who were present and some younger siblings who also went very excited upon hearing the news of the doctors coming to their schools. The children were examined,  diagnosed and treated in the cases that were necessary. Those children who needed medicine received at he time of the visit and the ones who needed a follow-up or a new consultation were scheduled for a visit to the local hospital promptly after the initial check up. In particular, 2 children needed a consultation with a Cardiologist and it was done shortly after with very positive results. Dr. Wirth has personally devoted his efforts to enquire and follow up with each child under his care. We are blessed to have him as part of our Sumando Manos Team. Thank you for all your efforts. 


For the families in these remote areas, a simple visit to the local hospital poses a tremendous challenge. First, there is a limited number of spots to be seen on a daily basis at the hospital; so for families to get an appointment it means having to walk before dawn with their little kids something between 10 to 30 kilometers on deserted countryside paths and get to the hospital by 6 a.m. or sometimes earlier than that.  Most of the time when they get to the hospital, the available appointments are already taken since the hospital operates on a first come, first served basis. This means that they have to walk back home without being seen and try again the next day. There is never assurance that they will be seen if they can’t get one of those appointments. This is a feeling of deep frustration and disappointment and this often puts the lives of the children at risk - a condition that can be diagnosed with a simple medical check-up is often overlooked because of the lack of medical services in the area. 

We share photos of the schools visited: 

  • Kindergarten class at School E.E.P. 734 in Lot 3, Pampa Chica.
  • School E.E.P. 395 in Paraje Pampa Ombu, Pampa del Indio.
  • School E.E.P. N° 616 “Capitán Facundo Solari”, Ubicada en Paraje El Salvaje, Pampa del Indio. 
  • Anex to School E.E.P. Nº 916 "Juan Jose Castelli”, Paraje El Gramillar, Pampa del Indio.


Thanks to Dr. Wirth, Dr. Daniela and to all the wonderful and dedicated teachers and directors of these schools for coordinating efforts for the wellbeing of the children. 


We couldn’t give these children the medical attention and nutrition they receive without your contributions. Thank you for supporting Sumando Manos Foundation. 


Our children in a school in Misiones
Our children in a school in Misiones

We continue providing medical and nutritional services to over 7000 children in Argentina. But we haven't stopped there.

We're now also providing drinking water, which is key to their survival. Starting in 2016, we've already installed six different water plants in the area of Pampa del Indio, Chaco with amazing results as children can now drink, cook and wash with clean water.

We've also succesfully installed a water filtration system, to clean up arsenic water. This is a very complex process, done by people with a certain degree of expertise who had to travel over one thousand miles in order to perform this job. The beneficiary of this complex work was a school in the town of Huancar, province of Jujuy, at the end of a windind and mountanous road, not suitable for everyone. However, over one hundred children and thier respective families have been benefitted by this project and now can enjoy a basic benefit that people living in a city enjoy: drinking clean water.

We've not stopped there. Every two month, Sumando Manos continues to take a road trip with dentists, nurses and pediatrists in order to attend to the need of children in Jujuy, Salta, Santiago del Estero, Chaco, Misiones, Catamarca and other rural area schools that need medical care, nutrition, clothing and school supplies.

We continue working on behalf of those that help our foundation and maintain our promise to continue our campaign with dignity and effort.

Thank you for your continuous support.


Lapacho School, El Soberbio, Misiones, Argentina
Lapacho School, El Soberbio, Misiones, Argentina

When schools starts, for most kids it is an exciting time between choosing a new backpack, a new gadget or the coolest new shoes on the market. However, for our kids in rural areas of Argentina it is a different story. Going back to school after the summer recess mostly means being able to get a meal on a daily basis whether it is breakfast or lunch, and sometimes, this is the only one they’ll get for the day. It also means reuniting with their loving teachers who are also cooks, nurses, gardeners, janitors and so much more. The rural school also becomes a First Aid Center where doctors can provide medical care on their trips. Under the loving and dedicated care of rural school teachers the kids make the effort to get to school by foot, by horse or by bike if they’re lucky enough to have one. Some walk long miles to get there, others sleep at school during the week and others hitch a ride on a motorcycle or a neighbor’s car. Despite many obstacles, kids are happy and face reality with an optimistic outlook. We strive to help them feel that they have an opportunity to have a better present and future. Our work can only be achieved with the support of our donors and sponsors who join hands with us to work tirelessly so these communities can have access to medical, nutritional and educational services. 

First aid kit donated to Fortin Brown, Chaco.
First aid kit donated to Fortin Brown, Chaco.
Breakfast at one of the 90 schools we support
Breakfast at one of the 90 schools we support
Clean Water - Huancar Jujuy 1
Clean Water - Huancar Jujuy 1

All of the support and constant donations have helped for many needs and problems, also attracted the kids back to school. Enrollment rose from 5 to 42 children. We were in a place forgotten and far away, but all the help we received for years allowed us to learn and understand a word so important, the most important, even unknown for us: LOVE”, were Principal Osvaldo’s words after see how his school located in the middle of the jungle at El Boton (El Soberbio, Misiones) was transformed and the children are attending class without facing anymore the treats of mal nutrition or infant mortality due the lack of food and contaminated water.

“WHEN LOVE DOES NOT HAVE BORDERS, THE WORD "THANKS" BECOME INFINITE”, were Principal Monica’s words when we contacted her to let them know that we are able to implement a project to filter out Arsenic and Flour. After decades without a solution, the children count with clean water in her isolated school located in the mountains at more than 13000 feet high in Huancar (Jujuy, Argentina).

Schools are located in isolated places: mountains, jungles, and this situation is aggravated by the lack of sanitary and education attention, the irregular or scarce government aid, and the precarious infrastructure located in places with difficult accesses due to their geography, climate and lack of paved roads.

We carry out visits to several provinces providing help to our teachers and supporting their invaluable work.

Communities under the poverty line are extremely vulnerable to hunger, and they can’t provide what children need to grow and learn. 

The food that underprivileged children receive at the school usually is their only daily meal. And reaching out them with doctors and dentist through our projects is the only access they have to receive a basic healthcare support.  

Many times we look at situations from our perspective, based on our experience and knowledge we assume things and take them as given. But if we change the context, that knowledge may not be useful, or sometimes a simple and trivial situation can become very complex one.

Among the many cases treated during the last years, I would like to share the story about 2 children.

During a routine revision done by our doctors at rural schools in Santiago del Estero, the following two cases were detected and carefully treated by them.  One child with a hot coal burn (wood stove) and the other child with a boiling water burn.

A domestic accident like a burn can be treated quickly in a city, but when this happens in an isolated community without infrastructure and access to cover their basic needs, one simple burn can lead to an infection, gangrene and even the death of the child.

Our doctors saved their lives

Since 2005, reaching more than 11000 children throughout more than 120 rural schools, feeding centers and foster homes, there have been several stories and projects in the history of our organization like the ones above. However, those stories only exist because a lot of people were willing to understand other people’s needs, and their realities, and they were willing to give to make a change.

Please make a change in your life and make a change in other people lives. Just let yourself be driven by fulfillment instead of achievement, and suddenly you will realize that helping others is easier than you think.

By donating, you become part of this project. Please join us and reach as many children as we can.  Any amount counts.

Your support is the key to make underprivileged children feel that there are important and have an opportunity for a better future.

With Gratitude,

Escuela Barranca Molle - Catamarca
Escuela Barranca Molle - Catamarca
Care - Child with a boil water burn
Care - Child with a boil water burn
Care - Hot Coat Burn
Care - Hot Coat Burn
Shoes - donation for school located in Salta
Shoes - donation for school located in Salta

Dear Friends

We believe that understanding an action through the  “why” we are doing it help us  to drive them by fulfillment instead of achievement and it is key to comprehend and aim to the impact beyond of results.

All projects related to fresh water are critical to improving a child’s quality of life, as clean water is fundamental to health, nutrition, hygiene, disease prevention, and learning.

Monica, the Director of Rural School 365 in Huancar, Jujuy, had the following reaction when we confirmed that we would start working to provide her school with safe drinking water without arsenic and fluor:



With immense emotion, we want to share that our work for School N.365 in Huancar, Jujuy, has been completed. The 82 children who attend this school will no longer consume water contaminated by harmful elements like arsenic and fluoride.

Rural School 365 is located more than 4100 meters above ocean level and isolated in an area with incredible weather extremes. The temperature can vary from 27 degrees Celsius to -18 degrees Celsius just between day and night. One of the biggest problems faced daily by the inhabitants of Huancar is the contamination of their drinking water, as the area’s volcanic sediments result in harmful elements like arsenic and fluoride entering their water supply.

Our project was highly complex, as it involved working with a remote geographic location, climate, and technology. The task, involved installing necessary filters for the reduction of arsenic and fluorine. The filters were integrated into a system of water tanks and an electric water heater to ensure the complete processing of the water. The filters had to be built to avoid freezing and to rely on a simple and minimal maintenance system.

The water tests performed by Jujuy Drinking Water showed excellent results, indicating that the arsenic and fluoride levels are now below the maximum levels allowed for consumption. (World Health Organization)

This work was made possible by many people who collaborated in different ways. Whether you contributed through inspiration, work, or donation, each of you was key to making this project a reality. The 82 children who attend school 365 in Huancar no longer consume poisoned water, and now feel that they have a better chance to grow and learn.

Special thanks to Maria Eugenia, Monica, and all of the rural teachers for their commitment, dedication, and love for the children.

To Santiago (specialist in water treatment), Marta, and Wilfredo Daniel  who are responsible for this projects’ execution.

Thanks for the will and commitment to help these children through Sumando Manos. Thank you all, and with much emotion, we share with you the message sent from the school:

We wish to share the news that, in September, we finished the repairs and project to provide drinking water at EEP N ° 239 located in the Pampa Chica Parade, Pampa del Indio, Chaco. The school has 144 students, with Hugo as it director.

Thanks to all those who continuously collaborate with us to improve these children’s quality of life. Through our work at the children’s schools, they are able to have a better opportunity. The 239 school is also part of the "Breakfast for a Child" program. This program has been delivering food to schools in Chaco and Misiones, monthly, for the last 7 years.

Children’s access to clean drinking water is key to improving their quality of life, as it is essential for their health, nutrition, hygiene, prevention, and learning.

We want to share a “Pedro Inchauspe” student’s excitement at the end of the 2016 semester when he received his diploma as a flag bearer at the school to which he walked 6 kilometers a day to attend. Here we see Efrain in the photo with his grandfather and director Hugo, overcome with deep emotion as he faced such an important and deserved achievement. We take this opportunity to thank the team of teachers who each day instruct their students, that do their work by changing the direction of a child’s life. With their conviction and perseverance, they have accompanied Efrain on this path with similar effort, love, and dedication. 

The school mentioned in the article (School 239 in Colonia Pampa Chica, Pampa del Indio, Chaco), at which Efrain completes his primary cycle, has been part of our "Breakfast for a Child" feeding program for 7 years. The program takes place in the provinces of Chaco and Misiones, providing nutrition for over 600 children who receive food, in order to supplement their breakfast and lunch. This program is crucial, because for many children this food is the only thing they eat during the day. To continue this project, we need your help. With just $10 per month a child can eat breakfast daily for a full month. Luis, Jorge and Ana has worked with us on this project through their monthly contribution and valuable availability of the staff of the local Supermarket in Resistencia, Chaco, who prepares the monthly orders and delivers them to the schools at no cost to our foundation. Next year we are planning to include 3 additional schools in Misiones.

During the month of November, we completed our work at School EEP No. 734 “Ejercito de los Andes" and the Kindergarten class, in Lot 3 Paraje Pampa Chica, Pampa Del Indio, Chaco, from to the QOM community, where 210 children attend. Our work included the complete installation of pipes for the orchard, and the repair of bathrooms for teachers and children. In this particular case, the pipe installation in the orchard supported one of the school’s main activities: through its Environmental Multipliers program, children and teachers participate in activities aimed at caring for animals, forestation, nature, eating habits, behaviors and values. Thanks to Ruben for the coordination, and the Director Claudia and Miss Nancy.

We continue working together with the Asociación Pequeños Pasos and the Conin Foundation of Loma Hermosa, Gral. San Martín, province of Buenos Aires. In October, we finished the roof  and floors of the center. Here are some photos of an afternoon they shared with the moms and the kids.

It is a great pleasure to continue our joint work with the Integral Educational CenterCamino a la Casita”. Our collaboration has led to the purchase of materials for the completion of classrooms that will support literacy. For a little over a month, the center has been working on its literacy project using the "Dale" Project (Right to Learn, Read and Write). From meeting to meeting, moment to moment, progress is seen. We therefore want to increase our focus on this project, since it is a key part of a child’s schooling and development.

Also, our collaboration allows the Integral Education Center to continue with the regular activities of Camino a la Casita, which include the complementary training of children in chess, basketball, drawing and music, as well as the provision of lunches and snacks.

It is always gratifying to receive material donations in Buenos Aires. Thanks to the constant work of Teresa, these contributions are organized, cataloged, and sent to the different schools, centers and small first aid centers that we serve in the provinces of Buenos Aires, Corrientes, Salta, Santa Fe, Entre Ríos, Misiones, and Chaco. We have the unconditional support of the transport companies that make the transfer and delivery at no cost to the foundation. We want to highlight in particular the donation of cots, mattresses, chairs, paintings, toys, clothes, from the Kindergarten "El Grillo Jacinto", which were sent to Asociacion Civil Pequeños Pasos. Schools were provided with fans, clothes, shoes, toys, school supplies, backpacks, storybooks, TVs, DVDs, computers, printers, toothbrushes and various items for school cooking. We’d like to thank Cesar Rolando from Famyca Company for the donation of packing tapes.

Further thanks to: Transportes Almafuerte for sending donations to Santa Fe, Entre Ríos and Corrientes and Transportes Petrovalle for sending donations to Misiones, without charge.

Our work together with Sai Organization continues in the feeding centers, recreation centers and homes with which we collaborate with monthly. In the second half of 2016, Florencio Varela continued his pediatric and dermatological services in the Community Center. An average of 15 children were seen per visit. They were treated and given necessary medications. Here, a pediatric dentistry visit was also carried out in which children were found to have high rates of cavities. In the fields of dermatology and pediatrics, both children and adults were treated for several conditions.

In Gonzalez Catan, Province of Buenos Aires, pediatric visits were carried out bimonthly. Around 30 children and several moms attended. The most common problems were respiratory, parasitic and dermatological diseases. During the day, breakfast, lunch and recreational activities were offered.

In Barrio Los Oleros, Posadas, Province of Misiones, we continue with the bi-monthly medical service. Approximately 40 children per visit. The attendance of neighbors was numerous since the area’s hospital is remote and lacks doctors and medicine. The majority of the patients presented typical seasonal health problems. As always, each patient receives meticulous attention and information on prophylaxis, prevention, etc.

At the Sai Center in Las Talitas, Tucumán, weekly services continue. Approximately 40 children participate in workshops on human values, recreational activities, and a snack. In addition, a pediatric visit was conducted in which 42 children, 6 months to 18 years old, and two mothers received medical attention. The most common consultations were respiratory infections, parasites, scabies, and pediculosis.

In the Toba community of Derqui, Buenos Aires, a veterinary camp, otorhinolaryngology, phonoaudiology, and blood pressure control and medication distribution were carried out. In all cases, adequate medication or vaccination was provided at no cost. In veterinary care, 53 pets were taken care of. In otorhinolaryngology, 29 patients were attended to and all the patients referred to phonoaudiology were also tended to. Blood pressure control was performed on 23 people and adequate medication was given to all participants.


In the month of November, the annual cycle of pediatric and dental visits was completed. Together with the Civil Association Santa Clara, we took a trip to Catamarca in which we visited School 169 of Barranca Molle in Andalgalá and School 489 in Aconquija, El Pucara. Doctors, dentists, nurses, volunteers and 3 members of our foundation – Guillermo, Graciela, and their son Damián—participated in this trip. On this occasion, a total of 40 children were provided medical care, toothbrushes and toothpaste, medicine, utensils, non-perishable food items and other donations. As part of the trip, they visited a new school that will be incorporated into our aid plan: School 479 in Las Pampitas, Aconquija. This school is located at 1700 meters above sea level and has only 6 students. With our visit, they received food, supplies and clothing. As the other schools in this area, School 479 has a special school calendar, from August to May each year, because of its inhospitable location. Kids and teachers face the challenge of traveling across land, gravel, and cornice to reach the school each day.

We recognize and thank each member of the Santa Clara Civil Association for their commitment and dedication, as they put their lives at risk each year on trips to the isolated places where the rural schools are located. Their work ensures that the children receive medical care, dental care, and food. 

We continue to collaborate with FANDA in the "Ponele las Pilas" Campaign - during 2016 we donated over 2500 headset batteries that fill the needs of more than 25 children throughout the year - we remain committed so that more kids can use their hearing aids.

During the month of September, School 373, in Paraje El Boton, El Soberbio, Misiones, received a new generator. Many thanks, especially to Marisa Agrano for her collaboration, to Luis  and Jorge Alberto for taking care of the complex task of transportation and for their unconditional help as always. We also thank everyone who shared the news and offered their help. The generator is critical for the school’s operation and the children’s basic needs. THANK YOU!

Moreover, during the month of October and in conjunction with the Rotary Club of Chacabuco Park, Buenos Aires, a fundraising event was held to build a dining kitchen in School 373, El Soberbio, in the province of Misiones. Our thanks to the retired NCO Club of the Federal Police, to the Rotary Club for their commitment to this endeavor and to the people who accompanied us with their attendance or collaboration. Many thanks!!! More than 250 volunteers were present and hundreds more collaborated with their contribution.

Restaurant Choripan Rodizio joins the "Breakfast of a Child" campaign and waits for you at 10 Sussex ST., Hackensack, New Jersey. Starting on Monday, January 2, 2017, for each barbecue that is purchased by a customer, Restaurant Choripan Rodizio will donate 1 dollar. With 10 dollars, food is covered for one month for a child in rural schools in Argentina.

The "Breakfast of a Child" campaign implemented by Sumando Manos Foundation has been collaborating since 2010 in 6 schools in Pampa del Indio, Chacoand 1 school in El Soberbio , Misiones for about 600 children.

THANKS Restaurant Choripan Rodizio for joining the initiative and all who visit the restaurant and collaborate to continue improving the quality of life of underprivileged children in rural zones in Argentina.

Congratulations to all the students, teachers, librarians, directors, doctors, dentists, nurses, and volunteers for the effort put in throughout 2016. Together, we worked so that the children and adolescents of our beloved Argentina can have a better future.

THANK YOU to all that collaborated in different ways to ensure that the children have better opportunities and feel that they are important.

Donation for school in the montain in Catamarca
Donation for school in the montain in Catamarca
Dr. Sonia receiving donation in Santa Fe
Dr. Sonia receiving donation in Santa Fe
School in  Pucara, Catamarca
School in Pucara, Catamarca
Fun Activity in Pequenos Pasos - Feeding Center
Fun Activity in Pequenos Pasos - Feeding Center
Dermatologic treatment during Pediatric Service
Dermatologic treatment during Pediatric Service
Children attending School at Barranca Molle
Children attending School at Barranca Molle
Happiness - Clean Water is a reality in Huancar
Happiness - Clean Water is a reality in Huancar
Efrain completed Elementary School
Efrain completed Elementary School
Almost there after walking 6Km to reach the school
Almost there after walking 6Km to reach the school



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Organization Information

Sumando Manos Foundation

Location: Miami Beach, Florida - USA
Website: http:/​/​
Project Leader:
Alejandro Itkin
Miami Beach, FL United States

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