"Would you like a hospital for Nicaragua?"
Patients were on cots in the hallways, all the rooms filled. The medical equipment was outdated and rudimentary. The rooms were dirty, the patients uncomfortable. After touring just one hospital, the friend he was touring with was stricken and asked Craig if they could cancel the other tours they had scheduled.
Helping Kids Round First's entry into Nicaraguan healthcare was unexpected and unplanned. After years of bringing basic medical and hygiene supplies to children, families, and HIV patients in Nicaragua's most rural communities, HKRF was offered the contents of an entire remodeling hospital to bring to Nicaragua.
After 22-months of planning, packing, paperwork, and bureaucratic red tape, the hospital arrived in Managua in November 2016, and the equipment and supplies were distributed to under-resourced hospitals in Masaya and Nueva Segovia.
Thanks to generous donations from many local hospitals, HKRF shipped its second and third hospital containers to Nicaragua in 2017 while continuing its work to support basic healthcare in rural communities. The hospital containers brought life-saving high quality equipment to hospitals lacking resources such as X-Ray machines, fetal heart monitors, and electronic hospital beds.
First Annual Women's Health Fair
Many rural villages in northern Nicaragua do not have immediate access to hospitals or clinics and many farmers lack the resources to afford to travel to receive healthcare.
In June, 2017, Helping Kids Round First helped sponsor and organize the first Women's Health Fair in rural villages of Nicaragua, bringing healthcare and health education directly to women in northern Nicaragua.
Below are excerpts from Sandy Jerstad's blog on the Health Fair:
"The 90 women who came were from the 46 different parishes in the Lutheran Church in Nicaragua, and had heard about this conference from their pastors, some of whom attended the conference.Two female gynecologists from Managua traveled three hours to speak to the women all day about different health issues, from violence towards women to breast exams to birth control. These women had never had an exam from a doctor, and knew very little about their own health.
On the second day, the women were given numbers in the order they arrived, and were able to have a full health exam from the female doctors, who set up make-shift exam rooms in the small building on the property. About 60 women participated and received reports on their exams through their parish pastor. During the day, speakers and a turntable were trucked in and loud music was played, offering opportunities for Karioke and dancing.The women were incredibly grateful for new knowledge and hoped this would continue."
Around the World
Helping Kids Round First continues to support worthwhile projects around the world. In 2017, HKRF partnered with Avera Mission and Global Health Ministries to send basic healthcare supplies to hospitals in Liberia, Africa.
HKRF has also helped support rebuilding efforts in Haiti following devastating natural disaster by partnering with Avera Haiti Mission to provide hosptial equipment to the country.
(For more information on past developments read our blog page from January 2015: Baseball Donations lead to Hospital Supply.)