Today our multimedia class visited a clinic in Nogales, Arizona that serves impoverished children from Mexico. Some of the families have traveled all night to get their children the medical attention they need.
But this clinic is only open once a month. The other 29 or 30 days of the month, St. Andrew’s Children’s Clinic is actually St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church. Doctors, nurses, speech and occupational theraptists, and translators volunteer their time and expertise to help these children who would otherwise have no access to the health care they need.
Last year, St. Andrew’s provided 42 cleft palate and lip surgeries, 37 orthopedic surgeries, and 24 eye surgeries to the children that sought their care. The clinic also provides the children with follow-up care and health and medical necessities such as prostheses, orthotic footwear, much needed medication, eyeglasses, and hearing aids.
Today, I got a chance to meet a little 7 year old boy, Joaquin, who was fitted for new leg braces. He had outgrown his old set, they would not strap around his waist anymore, and came to the clinic with his mother to be fitted for a new set. He was so excited at the chance to show off his new set of braces, he performed a little number for us in his wheelchair!
Then I met Diego, who is only 1 1/2. Diego has down syndrome and was at the nutrition clinic to learn how to properly use a straw. Check out this cutie pie! What an amazing day!!
I’ll be working on multiple articles about this trip, so make sure to check out my blog for updates about this wonderful place, the generous people that work here, and the beautiful children that make it so magical!
Last week, I accompanied Tawab Saljuqi on a visit to a high school Literature class out in Marana. Saljuqi was chosen as the Center for Middle East Studies Outreach scholar for 2010-2011 and as part of the deal, he has to give two lectures to the Tucson community about Afghanistan. The class was reading Khaled Hosseini’s “The Kite Runner” and the students were curious and eager to learn more about Afghan culture. Saljuqi prepared a presentation to teach the students a bit about the lives of the average Afghan. Here are some pictures from that trip. I’ll update with more pictures and hopefully a sound slide show soon…