PASEO Program Adventure- Day 10: El Porvenir y Trujillo, Peru

If I could fast forward one day (in real time)… My phone fell out of my pocket today in a shared taxi cab, which explains why this post is picture-free. I’ll explain what happened in tomorrow’s post (which is today in real time). I just figured I’d let you know you’ll have to use your imagination for the next few days with regards to what I’m talking about. And for those of you who just look at the pictures and don’t read the post (which I imagine is most everyone), well, it doesn’t really matter since you wouldn’t have made it this far in the post anyways.

Today, we traveled to El Porvenir, where we met with a group of local women and family members. We will undoubtedly learn a great deal from those in the group, but the goal is to help teach these individuals relaxation techniques for them to utilize at any given moment. More importantly, these individuals will be able to teach these learned skills to others in the town, so that the cycle of knowledge can continue to be passed along.

Our evening was spent learning about Psychology in Peru, which focused on healthcare throughout the country. We watched various videos that showed the lack of resources and services that public hospitals are able to provide. People wait days in public hospitals before being able to be seen by the general doctors on site. Specialists are rare to come by, so you have to wait to see one of the few general doctors. When it comes to important procedures of surgeries, you may have to wait days before being seen, but being seen just means that you’re given an appointment to return months later. You’re also given a list of supplies that need to be purchased for your procedure or surgery—all of which you must pay for and supply yourself.

Hospitals receive government funding, but tend to find themselves on the side of corruption, as they have deals with local clinics. If someone needs an appointment, the hospital will likely send them to a private clinic. Regardless of whether or not it is an emergency, the individual will have to pay for his or her own transportation from the hospital to the clinic. Now add on the cost of whatever the private clinic will charge as well.

If you want to see someone for a mental health concern in the hospital, you’ll likely see a nurse because mental health professionals are just as scarce as good public healthcare. Imagine having a serious medical condition, all while having to wait days in a hospital (no exaggeration)—in a wheelchair (if you are lucky), on a chair (if you can find an available one), on the floor (if there is room), or outside on the street. Now imagine having said serious medical condition, alongside a mental illness. With or without a mental illness, you will likely come out of the hospital worse than when you went in.

While medical care is short-staffed and completely behind, you can only imagine what mental healthcare is like. For this reason, oftentimes the solution for those with mental illnesses is to go to the church, talk to a friend (if you’re fortunate enough to do so), turn to alcohol and/or drugs, or commit suicide.

It’s difficult and frustrating to discuss the corruption, mismanagement, and maltreatment that takes place for those without financial resources, which ultimately affects the lives of so many. How do you make a change from the bottom upwards, when real change needs to start from the top and work its way downwards? Unfortunately, I don’t have the answer just yet, but we have to start somewhere. And seeing local individuals gather together to try and help those in their community is definitely a start in the right direction.

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Snapshot Challenge Saturday

It seems as though each and every day, we are constantly in a hurry to check off the next item on our to-do-lists. As I was rushing home earlier this afternoon, I came across a group of ducks slowly crossing the street, waddling over to the cool grass under the shade. Such as simple sight helped me realize that not everything in life has to be rushed, and if we could slow down and enjoy ourselves a little more often, life would be that much better.

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Nursery Rhyme Conspiracy Theory

Since Spring Break has arrived (at least here at the University of Central Florida), I decided to post something fun and mood-lightening. Hope you all enjoy it and have a great remainder of the weekend 🙂

Mother Goose told a lie, for she’s really a hen,
She did this to attract the attention of men.
Humpty Dumpty didn’t fall off of that ledge,
He was frightened by a gardener, mowing a hedge.

Peter Piper didn’t choose to pick the pickled peppers,
He was threatened by a group of big dancing steppers.
The ants march together, and reside on their hill.
Not one by one, though; it was just a fire drill.

Working on the railroad was a mere second job,
Suggested by my unemployment clerk; his name was Bob.
The eencey weencey spider had no encounter with the rain,
He was evicted from his household web for being such a pain.

Little Bo Peep didn’t really lose her sheep,
She was tired from partying, and just fell asleep.
Jack didn’t fall as he tumbled down the hill,
He had a girlfriend on the side, and was pushed by Jill.

Everyone has stories to cover up their flaws,
But when the truth is revealed, you need a moment’s pause.
Don’t be naïve and believe all that you hear,
Because without both sides, the story’s never clear.

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