On Saturday December 3rd Santa and Mrs. Claus (aka Tim and Carolyn Grzecka of Gilbert, AZ) arrived from the North Pole at the Palabras de Esperanza Community Center much to the delight of about 100 children. Santa and Mrs. Claus along with several Elf helpers helped pass out Barbie Dolls and soccer balls. One thing that was for sure is that the children really appreciated being given a gift by Santa and Mrs. Claus and their helpers. They were so polite and loved having their pictures taken as did some of the adults at the clinic. A special thanks go out to Santa and Mrs. Claus for all the work in getting the toys organized.
After the medical treatment and toys were passed out, the families were treated to hot dogs, chips and other goodies. Also certificates were passed out to students who received their GSD designation by Director Ortega. This is an going program at the center to further the education of people of all ages.
In a previous blog I gave you some insight into the clinic and what all it does for the families so much less fortunate than most of us. Since the last visit, trees have been planted that will provide food for the families that live around the center. It is hoped that they can become totally self sustainable with growing vegetables and fruits. Diabetes is something that is rampant throughout Mexico so when these families are taught proper nutrient diets, diabetes can be diminished. Being completed are the dental and physical therapy buildings. Next on the drawing boards is the plan to build 2 dorms for people that work on the center to have a place to stay.
There was a ophthalmologist who comes on the 1st Saturday of every month from Hermosillo as well as doctors from Phoenix and nurses this trip. Some patients were receiving physical therapy while others were having blood drawn and given vitamins and medicines. Thanks to Dr. George Stavros and his wife Susie who started this project just a short time ago. They had a 5 year plan and now just 2 plus years into the plan, they have accomplished that.
As well as the medical clinic that is put on, the center feeds 120 people daily. They were doing breakfast and lunch for a lot of the elderly and the children and in many cases this is the only hot meal they get per day. However, funds have run low, so they are currently only doing lunch. As you can see from the pictures, the shelves are getting very low. They can take any donations of food and non perishables. A partial list of what is needed would be powered milk, flour, sugar, oatmeal, cereals,Pancake mix, dried potatoes, vegetables either canned or frozen, condiments such as Caldo de Pollo (like a powdered broth) , Garlic salt, Pepper, Salt, Cumin, Onion Salt or powder, Celery salt, frozen chicken, canned Tuna, pasta and the list goes on and on. They are trying to live on a $100 per week budget for 2017, which is not very much when you have that many mouths to feed. All the plants that are on the property will provide needed fruit as they mature and were donated by a local business woman. They have a fridge/freezer and microwave that were donated. With the money given to them from the proceeds from the Toma Color Run, they were able to buy plates, glasses and forks and knives and 2 commercial grade stoves. They had a restaurant quality double door refrigerator donated to them but it will not stay cold, so if you know an appliance man that could take a look at it and donate what it would take to fix it.. that would be wonderful. They also have a restaurant quality oven to make their own bread.
If you can supply any of the items, please feel free to contact myself at 623-298-4284 or firstname.lastname@example.org . We can arrange for pick-up and it will be collected and taken to the center. If you would rather donate cash, please let me know and I will get in touch with the person to get it to. To all the winter visitors here, if you do not know where to shop and get the most for your money, please let me know and we can go together.
One last thing, on Christmas Day will they be feeding around 500 people from the San Rafael north and south area a Turkey dinner. They can also use Turkey donations. If you would like to volunteer to help cook or serve to those so very much less fortunate, please call Loly Martinez at 638-112-0517 and let them know.