* GUATEMALA * * * * * * * * Dick Rutgers *

An ongoing journal of life as a Missionary in Guatemala. It will make you laugh and cry at the same time.

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Location: Chimaltenango, Guatemala

I work in Guatemala with Hope Haven international and Bethel Ministries. Along with my friends Chris and Donna Mooney and their family, we share the love of Jesus in various ways. Although giving out and maintaining wheelchairs is our primary ministry, we are involved in many other things as well. Building houses, feeding the hungry, providing education to handicapped children in orphanages and villages, and hosting a camp for the handicapped are just a small part of the things that God has given us the privilege of getting involved in. For several years now I have been keeping daily journals. Once a week I try to post new journals and pictures. My e-mail is dick@dickrutgers.com Guatemala Cell Phone # 502 5379 9451 USA Phone # 360 312 7720(Relays free to Guatemala)

Friday, August 23, 2013

Pat wrote this one.

Ever Since Pat has opened Causa de Esperanza she has had less time to travel with me but when she does have time to travel she graciously offers to do the journaling, well sort of.  I simply hold of on writing anything until she publishes somthing in her journal and then after jazzing up the pictures a bit I copy it into mine.  I don't always coppy everything though so if you ever want to see more of what she writes CLICK HERE.

Pat wrote the following.

Dr. Jose and the Sicapate Clinic

I have written a number of times about our friend, Dr. Jose.  In truth, one of my favorite places to go is to visit him.  He is so enthusiastic about his difficult work that he energizes me.

Our last visit here was to bring some Kids Against Hunger food packets and some donated medications and supplies which different teams have brought down for the clinic.  (Thank you, Westside Church and Vicki Schurmer for your donations to the clinic.  You can see how appreciated your help is!)

This past trip we got to spend more time with him than usual, as he made a few home visits with us.  I learned that he sees an average of 60 patients each day in his tiny clinic.  He works here with just an office manager and psychologist—no nurse.  He described one of his greatest frustrations is the limited evaluations he is able to provide for each patient due to the heavy demand. 

He said he feels like he operates more like an emergency room triage than a traditional clinic.  If someone comes in with a belly ache, that is what he checks an treats.  Not because he is incompetent but because if he didn’t focus this way, he would be working 24 hours a day, rather than his sun-up to sun-down current schedule.  For all this he earns a whopping 7000 quetzales (less than $1000) a month.  Could he make more working in the city?  You betcha.  But he loves the people in this very poor rural area on the Pacific Coast of Guatemala, so he stays.

If any doctors or nurses who are reading this feel like they would benefit from the experience of spending a week in a rural Guatemala clinic, Dr. Jose is the guy to work with.  And he is ready and willing to accept any help he can get.  Email Dick or me for more information.

This clinic is funded by through the wife of the mayor of the area, and is trying to focus on prevention as well as treatment of disease.  This area is extremely poor, and Dr. Jose has identified malnutrition of young children and the elderly as the number one issue.

In response to this, the mayor’s wife has helped them prepare space for a malnutrition day care project.  Doctor Jose and the staff couldn’t wait to show me around.

The children will come in during the day, while their mothers receive education and training right here at the clinic.  The goal is to fatten up the children and educate the mothers as to how best to care for and feed their child.  Once a child has gained sufficient weight, they will leave the program to make room for a new child. 

I have been invited to come and spend a week here, helping the staff develop curriculum for the center and create materials for the children to use to assist their development.  I am so excited to get to work with these extremely dedicated and talented people.  I will be going down to spend a week at the coast when I return from the US in October.  (Isn’t it just like our God to locate the clinic within walking distance from the hotel in which we stay when we go to the coast?)

Good Grades Get You All Wet

(OK, so I borrowed 2 of them from Pat.)

We have been working for a while now with Marvin’s family, and through Bethel Ministries Dick has been able to find a sponsor to help pay for the expenses of schooling for the three older boys in the family.  One of the things we like to do with our sponsored kids is to keep in regular contact with them, and especially encourage them to study and get good grades.  It is such fun to reward them for their success.

This time, we decided that we would take the kids swimming at our hotel.  They allow outside guests to swim for only a couple of dollars a piece, and the kids seem to love it.  Besides, they usually get a lunch with us out of the deal, too.

We had a great time with the boys, and Fernando, who had accompanied us on this trip.  

Even our friend Dr. Jose came to visit with this family. 

Was our outing a success?  I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves!

The water slides were a big hit!

Fernando showed them how it’s done. . .

And the boys tried it out—with the security of Dick waiting for them at the end of the slide.

The “surf board” was also a favorite, 

and they all had to give it a whirl.

Even Dr. Jose’s son joined in the fun, under Fernando’s watchful eye.


Thanks you Pat,
<>< Yours in Christ, Dick ><>


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