Our medical mission team was highly successful this year once again in part because of your support.
Yes, as usual I did most of the work while everyone else took siestas most of the time!
Okay…the truth…We had forty-four extremely hard working team members;
Translators (Spanish and Cabecar)
Support and logistics
We worked in wet weather due to the start of the rainy season in Costa Rica. By the end of the week, we were wet, exhausted, muddy and somewhat beat up! We looked forward to returning home to some sunshine.
Fat chance! It’s worse here than in Costa Rica!
I’m sick of the rain…I know you are too. I pray none of you have had flooded homes.
With the cash donations collected at my office we were able to select some extremely deserving Cabecar Indians to help. The money was able to purchase bags of beans, rice and sugar. Approximately thirty-five little care packages were made and then distributed based on questions we asked. They were all deserving. Many had walked with kids in tow through the mountains, in the rain, same with horses and walking eight to twelve hours! Twelve was the longest time I knew of by inquiring of one of my patients.
One Cabecar woman traveled with her six year old daughter for hours on foot from deep in the reserve to our clinic site. They had nothing but a little bag of clothing. The little girl had been suffering from cardiac and respiratory issues for several years. The mother told us that when they were able to see doctors, they weren’t of much help. We don’t know why, but somehow the six year old girl had two surgeries and needed a third! She was very eager to see our pediatrician for help and counsel. They were given a hot meal to eat and the care package from you.
Another Cabecar woman traveled with a one week old baby by foot with nothing for twelve hours to see our doctors. They stayed in the hostel on church grounds the night before clinic started—a simple structure with wooden benches, a basic shelter to stay out of the elements. There are no comforts though it has an outdoor stove. If they have food, they can cook. Pots and some utensils are there for their use. Apparently, all respect it and leave it for others to use. After waiting to be seen by the various doctors and dentists, they finished around 2 p.m. and began their long trek home.
The hostel can accommodate quite a few families at a time. We met four to five of them. Some bring chickens to slaughter for food, others just some rice or whatever they have at the time.
I hope this provided a little view of our mission and the people who were helped.
Quite humbling really.
Can you imagine working outdoors and living in less than desirable accommodations everyday with the rain we are experiencing?
It sheds a different light on what we think of our own problems with or without the rain.
Thanks again for your personal contributions. If you’d like to see a few pictures, go to http://barretthealthcenters.com/medical-missions/costa-rica-mission-trip-2015.html
Dr. Rick Barrett
P.S. I reprinted photos from last year’s mission, hung them up for the people to see and take if they or someone they knew was in it. It was a simple thing that brought big smiles and tremendous happiness to all who saw them. (Another thing we take for granted…photos!)