Friday, October 17, 2014

Education and Healthcare--Together Again in Chirijquiac!

Qué:  Reunión de becados y clínica móvil
Dónde: Chirijquiac, Cantel, 100% K’iche’ Maya
Fecha: Miércoles 8 de octubre

Scholarship Meeting and mobile clinic in Chirijquiac, Cantel , a 100% K’iche’ Maya community, on Wednesday October, 8, 2014.

Pop Wuj Medical Spanish student, Elizabeth, in triage.
The mobile clinic included two Pop Wuj MedicalSpanish students, one a first family medicine resident from Chicago and a 4th year medical student from Arkansas.  Pop Wuj’s staff doctors, Carmen Rosa and Barbara as well as staff nurse, Luby also traveled with Pop Wuj to the rural area.  Pop Wuj’s coordinator, Amy, also participated as a medical translator.

The waiting room

The clinic saw 24 patients—mostly adult women with some children and teenagers, some seniors, and some scholarship family members.  

Dr. Barbara in a pediatric consult
While patients were being seen, Carmencita, the Pop Wuj Social Work Program and Social Programs director, and Amy conducted the scholarship meeting.  We discussed the end of the school year which is fast approaching, and the extra effort that is often required for our scholarship students to pass all of their classes.  Sadly, it's common in Guatemala and in our target communities for students to fail courses throughout the year, but this is no reason to quit and give up.  Most students are able to make up work or go to “recovery classes” (similar to summer school in the U.S.).  

Scholarship meeting
Pop Wuj has maintained a scholarship program in this community for over 20 years.  Our work requires the collaboration of the scholarship students, their families, Pop Wuj staff and volunteers, as well as the padrinos and madrinas (scholarship sponsors) who support the project and their individual students year after year.  Currently we have thirteen scholarship students in this community, ranging from preschool to last year of high school.

Scholarship meeting
At the close of the scholarship meeting, we asked for volunteers to be our K’iche’-Spanish translators for a large mobile clinic that we were planning for the following week.  The mothers and some fathers who participate regularly in the scholarship meeting often travel with us and translate when we have a mobile clinic in Xeabaj, a nearly monolingual K'iche' community.  Seven of the community members volunteered to translate for us!

Pop Wuj’s social work team will return to Chirijquiac in mid November to collect and review final report cards.  All of the students are expected to be finished with classes by then and will be able to attend the meeting with their parents.  

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