Friday, June 23, 2017

Week 2 Adventures

We spent the last week in the campo (countryside) in the rural community of Fila Grande. After spending a week in Nejapa at the AMOS campus learning about the model of community based public health care and community empowerment, I was excited to get into the field and see it in action. After an 8 hour trip on Sunday, we arrived in Fila Grande and got to meet some members of the community. Then on Monday, we got right to work. Our group split off to hike to different water sources and collect water samples for testing. On Tuesday, we saw about 75 pregnant women and children under the age of five at health stations where we checked their height and weight, as well as their hemoglobin levels (for anemia). On Wednesday, we went door to door in the community and surveyed people about their water consumption and storage habits.  Finally, that afternoon, we were able to share the data we had collected throughout the week with the community health committee. That was definitely my favorite part of this experience. The model that AMOS uses to approach community public health is all about empowering the community and allowing them to have ownership of the work that is being done. By sharing the information directly with the community health workers, we were able to see them begin the process of brainstorming solutions and implementing them to address the public health issues we presented. After only two weeks in Nicaragua,  I have learned so much about public health and have been inspired by the other students and community members I have gotten the opportunity to work alongside!

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