Clinica Medica Salvatore/Orphans, Guatemala
VPC’s Monthly Mission Partner (MMP) Month
What does the mission do/who does it serve?
Located in the small village of Cortijo in Palín district, just outside Guatemala City, the clinic serves the poor of the surrounding area. Dr. Erick Estrada heads a medical team that includes a general practitioner, a gynecologist, a dentist and dental assistant, a physiotherapist and three nurses. Outside the clinic, a list of fees for service is displayed at very reasonable rates, which are adjusted for income if necessary – for those over 60 and people with special needs are free.
What geographic area?
Centered on the village of El Cortijo, Palin district and surrounding villages.
How do you do it?
Every day, the clinic staff performs checkups for babies, dental work in both Cortijo and rural sites, and vision care in the form of donated glasses being matched to patient needs. Along with poverty and malnutrition, diabetes is a major concern. The clinic staff treats the disease, and provides medicines and nutrition counseling in an effort to improve patient health.
In addition to the medical program, Clínica Médica Salvatore reaches out to provide food for the poorest children in the village school. Support for the teachers is provided through talks on nutrition, classroom discipline and shared ideas on coping with overcrowded classes. Visitors with expertise in any suitable area are gratefully welcomed and village parents are happy to attend sessions geared to their needs.
How can one help/serve this mission? How and what can people donate? How can people volunteer?
The Guatemala Clinic Team delivers mission funds, medicines, clothing and other supplies. They will also experience and assist the ministry of Dr. Erick and Cynthia Estrada and their staff at the clinic in El Cortijo and other clinic sites. Participants should be in good health, enjoy working as a team and desire to make a difference. You do not need to know Spanish nor possess any particular medical skills.
Consider sponsoring a team member or making a donation to the team. Each individual is responsible for his/her airfare, meals, and rental vehicles and driver; the estimated total is $1000. Passport fees and a few immunizations, if needed, are extra. Helping cover some of these expenses ensures a successful trip for our missionaries and our mission partner.
Annual, Bi-Annual or regular events, trips or fundraisers for this mission
Trips to Guatemala once or twice a year
Alternative Gift Market
Is this a national or local organization?
Family operated service, Guatemalans helping Guatemalans
Personal testimonials about why it is important to help this mission
This mission partner is located in one of the poorest villages in Guatemala. Fees for services are minimal. As Dr. Estrada told me, “I never intended the clinic to be self-supporting.”
There is no financial support from the government. Three years ago the major contributor (foundation) reduced giving by 50%
This is a perfect example of local people service their fellow countrymen. Besides being a medical doctor, Erick Estrada was first a teacher & then, a pastor. He continues to spread the gospel daily – a true disciple, also preaching on other churches. He truly believes in their motto or mission statement, “Salud que transformation”, (Health that Reforms) – physical & Spiritual health – a holistic approach. They educate 30 mothers & young men and women to become nursing practitioners. These graduates receive a recognized diploma and return to their villages to serve others.
This is truly a “faith-based” mission who need our continued support and prayers to survive and continue doing God’s work here on earth. It has strengthened my faith-I have witnessed God’s answer to prayer. Eric and Cynthia have shown me by their example. What it means to give your life to the Lord-to do what he has told us to do. They live their lives for others. I have become more involved in ‘church life’ than ever before and constantly feel the difference it has meant for me. Telling others about the Estradas and their work with the poor of their country gives me a great deal of satisfaction. It makes me want to do more.
By Bruce Smithson
Venice Presbyterian Church Contact/Liaison
Name: Bruce Smithson
Phone: local: 941-882-3909/snowbird: 613-752-2706 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Name: Frank Ebetino, Elder