Thursday, August 16, 2012

dorms, schools, 24 hour care centers... and kids

Things continue to move along in our usual "ever changing," yet "always seemingly the same" way... I think this is mostly due to the fact that projects are always in the works - just at Guatemalan speed :)

Jacinto, or "Chinto," and Angel continue to plug along on the well and wall that will need to be in place by the time the dorm structure itself will be started. The front of the property where the house sits has already had a block wall base with a chain link fencing in between the cement posts, but the back half, which has all been just pasture up until now, has only had a barbed wire low lying fence around it to keep our animals in and other animals out. Now, with the prospect of people living back there, we are continuing the block wall so as to provide more safety for future construction and inhabitants of the dorm. With already a couple teams in the works for helping with the building construction, we continue to move forward one day at a time.

We have also been able to monitor a couple pregnancy patients with the fetal monitor that we were given; while this will be extremely useful during a labor/delivery process, we have been able to use it to monitor heart accelerations and decelerations with movement or contractions in a couple concerned/post-term patients, which was very helpful in determining whether these patients needed to be referred or not. We have also started a more formal physical therapy program, which we were able to structure with a good friend and physical therapist who came to visit a couple months ago. With some new generalized paper charting forms and a couple physical therapists interested in creating a rotation schedule for visiting here, we are hoping that this will continue to grow into a program that will be able to train up any interested Guatemalans with a focus on teaching the parents how to continue the exercises in the home, as well as provide a source of encouragement to the families that care so diligently for these children day in and day out without a break or resources for help. As most of these children are already on the nutrition program, they continue to be at risk for many of the illnesses that we hope to be able to serve with the 24 hour acute care center; with the public department hospital (2 1/2 hours from us) now serving a population of over 1 million people (due to the lack of resources available in the other public hospitals), we feel more and more the urgency to get a place up and running where we can offer these services and help monitor patients that the hospital physically cannot take.

Things are also falling into place for the nursing school to open! While it will not be ready to open in January of 2013, the paperwork is almost completely in order (a pure miracle and completely due to the help of our friend Victor's wife, who has worked hours upon hours getting our proposal set)! We are still in prayer for a director and teachers, two positions that the government mandates must be filled with a doctor or professional nurse (master's level) that has their Guatemalan license; our prayer is to find personnel that will have a heart for God and His people here who see this school as another mission field, not just a job. There are a few different ways that we can move forward with this, especially as we have had such a difficult time finding people willing to serve in these capacities; we greatly appreciate any and all of your prayers in this area!

And our family continues to thrive here in Guatemala as well. The biggest cause for crying and temper tantrums is when Anna and Ethan are forced to stay inside for any period of time, and I marvel at how much they cherish the Guatemalan farm life we have here. Anna's morning routine includes "coffee" with mom and dad and then out to milk the cow, with sometimes a mid-morning dip in the cow trough on hot days. Ethan shows signs of following in his father's footsteps, as he loves to be in the hanger with the planes, hammer (or really anything big) in hand, pounding on whatever surface we allow him to... or out with the cows :) I am beginning to wonder if this "cow loving" trait is imbedded in the DNA, as both of our kids seem to love to be with them as much as their father does! Aaron just finished up an annual inspection on the Cessna, as well as continuing work on the Aztec during the rainy season. We also continue to produce various dairy products with the milk our Jersey provides, hoping to continue to introduce the area here to products such as yogurt and different types of cheese. We have also added two new monthly clinics to the schedule, doing three clinics one week and four the next. It has been a privilege to continue to serve in this capacity, and I am so blessed and thankful for a husband who helps with the kids on the days that I go off to clinic!

Below are some pics that show a little better some of the happenings lately...

Here is the new wall being put up; this is the beginning stages when they
were still setting the concrete posts

Here is a little boy that was helped through the nutrition program;
a few months ago, he was severely malnourished, but with just
a little bit of beans and protein supplement, he improved greatly!

One of our good friends "meaching" Ethan
(this works as well as a car ride for putting him to sleep :) )

Rachel got a shot of Anna on a walk on one of our favorite paths


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