Angels Newsletter #27
Dear Friends of Angels of the Amazon,
During the pandemic, Angels of the Amazon faced our largest challenge to date. However, with the help of our donors, sponsors,
healthcare workers, and the community, we worked to provide special services to minimize the impact on our programs (economic
development, health care, and education) in the communities.
These were a few of our initiatives during the COVID pandemic:
- Creating an online store for the artisania cooperative – Manos Amazonicas.
- Remote learning by satellite tv was installed in the schools so children could continue learning.
- AoA Clinic staff assisted in vaccination and education about COVID in the communities.
Now, with virtually 100% of people 5 and older vaccinated against COVID, life has essentially returned to normal in the communities of
the Tahuayo River basin.
Thanks to your support, our March fundraiser provided the means to buy necessary school supplies for the students to begin their new school year. In July we will continue to host Be The Change Volunteers to aid in the construction of a new elementary school classroom next to the current high school campus. This is critically important as the current Elementary School (built by the government) is currently flooded and this has become a seasonal problem in this region.
“El Chino Elementary School during the flood season”
Our major need for the remainder of the year will be for the continued operational expenses of the Esperanza Clinic. We
need to hire an additional sta person, which will be a major increase in expense. With our expansion of the clinic in 2019,
we now service communities outside the Tahuayo River as well as all 17 of the communities of the Tahuayo. The clinic has
saved many lives, assisted in childbirth, and alleviated the symptoms of illness in hundreds of people. We ask for your
support in this venture.
The history of our involvement in health care is more fully described in a new blog on our website. In brief summation, it began more than a decade before the founding of Angels of the Amazon in 2007. Amazonia Expeditions opened our main Tahuayo Lodge in 1995. The first version of the main lodge was small and simple. People from the nearby communities used to stop in requesting help with aches and pains, fever, and various injuries.
We did the best that we could to assist, but quickly realized our limitations in the area of health care. At this time, the government had assigned one health professional to the Tahuayo region, Jorge Caro, who worked out of Esperanza Village in a modest structure, 2 x 4 meters in size, with no electricity or light for the evenings, with a dirt floor and inadequate support and supplies. I arranged for our tourism company, Amazonia Expeditions, to buy the medicines and other supplies.
Eventually, we had some tourists see the assistance we were providing in health care, and they wanted to donate some money. They also suggested we incorporate as a non-profit so that their donations would be tax-deductible. It was not long after this that Angels of the Amazon was born (2007). By the end of 2008, we had built 4 rooms and repaired solar power for lights and refrigeration to store vaccines and antivenin for venomous snake bites. Angels also hired and paid for a nurse assistant in obstetrics to help with childbirth. By the end of 2011, we had added running water, bathrooms, and a concrete floor. As time went on, we continued making additions,
adding sta and rooms, so that now there was an emergency room, waiting room, staff and medical records room, general medicine room, pharmacy and lab, overnight patient room, and birthing room. But the wood walls were deteriorating in the humid tropical climate, so in 2019 it was decided to completely rebuild the clinic with concrete walls and adequate facilities for future growth, including dormitory space for staff. Our clinic is now one of the most modern, and best-funded in all of rural Amazonia.
We need your support to continue this dream of health care for the Tahuayo communities. All of this was possible thanks to the help of our generous sponsors, donors, and volunteers, over so many years. Many of you have seen where we began… and now what we have become. You are all part of the mission of Esperanza Clinic and together we can keep accomplishing our goal of providing healthcare to the communities of the Tahuayo.
“Newly completed interior of the Esperanza Clinic”
The Jungle’s Daughter