Today, our third day of clinic, took us to a new village - San Cristobal Acasagaustlan - on a very hot day. Another day to remember, to savor and to humble ourselves before. It was an early start once again, as all the equipment and trunks had to be unloaded and set up in the school rooms for two days of work. We were excited by the sight of the crowds awaiting our arrival. With no signs of fatigue, doctors, dentists, translators, physical therapists, lab, pharmacy team, the wheelchair team and support staff began their jobs for the day.
As always we are so grateful for the local Guatemalan ‘red hats”. These community volunteers, recruited by Faith In Practice and the local village leaders, play a key role in our clinic’s success. Red Hats are named for the highly identifiable red baseball cap given to them by Faith In Practice. They help with the flow of the crowds moving though the compound including check-in at the front gate and helping to get patients to the various locations they need to be. Red Hats also assist at each of the clinic doors, managing the flow in and out.
Families filled the courtyard where they were met by volunteers and directed to locations and clinics where their specific needs were addressed; Triage, Pediatrics, GYN, VIA/Cryo, General, Dental, Lab, Mobility Clinic and the Pharmacy. Dozens of patients were referred to the Faith In Practice surgical referral team for tonsillectomies, cyst and cataract removals, hysterectomies, and hernia, knee or shoulder surgeries, along with a variety of other procedures.
This evening at dinner the Estes Village Team reflected on our day. Not only are we are deeply blessed by the grace and gratitude of these lovely people, we are blessed to work with the people on our team. We each come with diverse medical and nonmedical backgrounds, but the great equalizer is our common desire to serve the people of Guatemala.