Compiled by two ex-Chapter Presidents-turned-MEDLIFE staff (Emma from New York and Sophia from London) this list of student fundraiser ideas is guaranteed to earn you the big bucks (or pounds!). With our Walls That Unify campaign in full swing, we decided to put our linguistic differences aside for the good of the Movement and give you 15 student fundraiser ideas that will work on both sides of the pond!

1. Power Hour

We borrowed this idea from the amazing Indiana University Chapter (check out their MED Week Fundraiser here!) Get your Chapter or Society to dedicate one intense hour to calling anyone and everyone they can think of and try to raise as much money as possible. Set up as if you were a trading floor, play upbeat music and get someone to emcee the hour to create an electric atmosphere! Indiana had a screen with everyone’s fundraising totals to get members competing for the most donations!

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2. Water Pong Tournament

Encourage your Chapter/Society members to partake in some friendly competition AND stay hydrated with a water pong tournament. Set up a bracket and have teams pay to enter. The winning team receives a prize of your choice - get creative, you know your universities better than we do!

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3. Puppy Kissing Booth

Enlist the help of your furry friends and set up a kissing booth in a public area of your university. Charge students to get some puppy lovin’ and destress from a hectic week!

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4. Sports Tournament

Use your student fundraiser to get competitive! Take advantage of your University’s sports facilities to organize a sports tournament of your choice, this can be a standard 5-a-side football (yes, the original type) tournament or go for the full Dodgeball-esque experience. Get people to enter their teams, and each team pays a fee to enter! Organize a prize for the champions and a participation prize for the teams who actually believe that ‘it’s just the taking part that counts’ (also known as LOSERS).

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5. Gaming for Good

Hold a gaming night at your university where students can enter to play their favoUrite (go UK) video games for charity. Whether you do it in the form of a 24-hour marathon or a tournament is completely up to you but this is a great way to get more people involved in your fundraising!

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6. Casino Royale

Host a Casino themed night - either a whole night of black-tie (in true Daniel Craig style) or a simple poker tournament where a portion (or all!) of the winnings go to MEDLIFE.

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7. Dine and Donate

Partner with a local restaurant to have a delicious fundraiser! Encourage your students and their friends to eat at your chosen restaurant and collect a portion of the profit. Eating good food for charity… where do we sign up!?

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8. 5k/Fun Run

A little less creative student fundraiser idea but a tried and tested way to raise some money! Consider doing it as a Chapter for force in numbers and encourage more members to get involved! Use your MyMovement campaign page to receive donations from friends and family.

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9. Krispy Kreme Sale

Krispy Kreme sell glazed donuts at a special price to be used in fundraisers! Pre-order your donuts, work out how much profit you want to make per donut, and get selling on campus! Students cramming for deadlines love donuts (especially if the proceeds go to charity!)

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10. Pub Quiz

Get your students to come down to a local bar or diner for a night of trivia! Students pay to enter in teams and answer the rounds of questions you set - make sure you have a charismatic quiz master to keep teams engaged. Coordinate with the pub to see if they’ll offer the winning team a free round of drinks!

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11. Late Night Food Stand/ Delivery

Post night-out food is a given, whichever continent you may be in, so set up a stand or offer delivery to students to satisfy those late-night cravings! Pizza, chips, and grilled cheese would all work well!

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12. Spin-A-Thon

Get your sweat on in a spin-a-thon! Ask your University gym to donate some spin bikes for the day so that teams can take on a Tour-de-MEDLIFE. Doing it in a public place on campus will draw more attention and people can donate on their way to class!

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13. Raffles

Ask local businesses to donate a prize for your raffle, charge $1/£1 for a ticket and winners will receive a prize. Make sure you vary the items so you have a range of small and larger prizes!

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14. Charity Fashion Show

Raise some money, but make it fashion by hosting a charity fashion show at your university! Charge an entrance fee and enlist the help of different cultural student organizations that would be interested in showcasing traditional clothing, or introduce fun categories and really get the party started. Regardless of the type of fashion, this is both a great way to raise money and an opportunity to interact and recruit students from all over campus.

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15. Late Night Shuttle Service

Fill your tank with gas (or petrol) and crank the tunes, it’s time to be the best designated driver your university has ever seen. Offer rides to and from parties/bars for your friends and charge them a fee for your generosity. For an extra fee maybe you can even stop at the drive-thru to satisfy those late-night cravings.

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We hope this compilation of student fundraiser ideas is useful and helps you put the FUN in fundraising for 2020! As we strive towards our goal of raising $350,000 for Walls That Unify in Union Santa Fe, we need your help more than ever! Fundraising can be intimidating, but remember that you have an entire Movement of world-changers here to support you.

As always, please share your events with MEDLIFE (@medlifemovement) so we can brag about all the good stuff our Chapters/Societies are doing. Every fundraiser makes a difference no matter how big or small!

For more useful resources, check out our fundraising and donations page on Campus Labs. Good luck fundraising!!

As you head back to school for the new academic year, we’re expanding our Service Learning Trip options so that everyone can volunteer in Peru and beyond! As the MEDLIFE Movement has grown over the last 15 years, our Service Learning Trips have evolved with us. We are striving to include students from all disciplines (not just health and medicine!) so that we can give you more opportunities to learn AND continue empowering low-income communities through medicine, education, and development. 

Our confirmed dates for our new Service Learning Trips are below, but remember that these trips can be planned for any date and you can volunteer in Peru (or our other sites) at a time that works for you. 

Why Service Learning Trips?

We believe that real change starts from within: You must first experience the realities of poverty first hand before you can truly be part of the solution. By diversifying the Movement beyond the original Mobile Clinic, we are not only giving passionate students the opportunity to see the world through new eyes, but also creating long-lasting, sustainable change through specific projects, education, and healthcare.

With these new Service Learning Trips available, MEDLIFE is offering you the opportunity to take your education beyond the classroom by becoming a volunteer in Peru, no matter what you’re passionate about.

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1. Development Corps 

Historical, social, and political factors combined with a lack of urban planning have led to a rise in the informal land occupation on the outskirts of Lima, Peru. Members of these communities seek safe public spaces for recreation and leisure, but the inhospitable land, scarcity of public space, and a lack of financial resources have continued to get in the way of progress. MEDLIFE is working to change that through Development Corps.

Development Corps is a week-long Service Learning Trip that allows students interested in architecture, engineering, and community development to volunteer in Peru. You will work hand in hand with local professionals and community members on a development project in urban settlements on the outskirts of Lima, Peru. Your trip will empower impoverished communities by constructing safe public spaces where kids can play, young people can hang out with their friends, and families can spend time together. 

Upcoming trips*

  • January 11 - 19, 2020

  • March 14 - 22, 2020

  • May 16 - 24, 2020

Register now!

 

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2. Education Workshop 

With low levels of English education, inappropriate infrastructure, and outdated teaching methodologies, the children of Peru are struggling to get an adequate education. This stifles their opportunities to chase their dreams and fulfill their potential as they grow up. 

Education Workshop is a week-long Service Learning Trip with long term impact. It allows students interested in teaching to work hand in hand with local professionals to bring quality education to low-income communities on the outskirts of Lima, Peru. This trip will empower local students and their families by providing a variety of quality, immersive educational activities. As a volunteer in Peru, you will have the opportunity to lead activities that foster the development of soft skills, like teamwork and creativity. Education Workshop also gives local students an opportunity to practice their English and teaches them about healthy habits, like handwashing and toothbrushing. Volunteers will also help create a positive environment by building kid-friendly learning spaces at schools.

Upcoming trips*

  • December 14 - 22, 2019

  • May 23 - 31, 2020

Register here!

 

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3. Dental Clinic

In our regular Mobile Clinics, the dental station is consistently one of the most-requested services, but the dentists are only able to treat 15 patients a day. The high demand led to the creation of Dental Clinic, a Service Learning Trip dedicated entirely to the type of health services the communities have requested. 

Dental Clinic is a week-long Service Learning Trip that allows students interested in dentistry to volunteer in Peru and support a Mobile Dental Clinic in low-income communities surrounding Lima, Peru. Volunteers will shadow local dental professionals as they provide free, high-quality dental care directly to people who lack access to basic services. Volunteers will provide support in a variety of roles including patient registration, station set-up, instrument preparation, and will also shadow dentists throughout procedures like extractions, fillings, and cleanings. Students will also have the opportunity to lead workshops with kids about dental health providing them with the tools to lead healthier lives.

Upcoming Trips*

  • January 11 - 19, 2020

  • February 29 - March 8, 2020

  • May 23 - 31, 2020

  • August 1 - 9, 2020

Register now or contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it to find out more information

 

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4. Leadership Corps

Cycles of poverty and inequality are deeply intertwined with a country's historical and political circumstances. In order to create a world free from the constraints of poverty, we must first understand its root causes. 

Leadership Corps is a two-week Field Course that gives student leaders the opportunity to deepen their understanding of the underlying causes of poverty. Through academic discussions and field visits in Peru and Ecuador, volunteers will learn about social inequality and how it has been shaped by internal migration and urbanization. This trip will explore key issues faced by local communities and examine the work that MEDLIFE and other local community organizations undertake to support low-income communities. Students will hear from MEDLIFE’s founder Dr. Nick Ellis and key local community leaders on how the MEDLIFE Movement was born out of the communities you visit.  

Upcoming Trips 

  • June 13-28, 2020 (TBC)

Register today!

See you on the next Service Learning Trip!

*The listed dates are for confirmed SLTs, but these trips can be planned for any date if we have enough volunteers. 

A critical part of every Mobile Clinic is the Patient Follow-Up Program.

When patients are simply referred to local hospitals for treatments, many times they still fail to receive the actual treatment they need due to lack of resources, lack of confidence, or lack of a true understanding of their medical problems. And that's why MEDLIFE developed a year-round patient follow-up process. Our patients are supported in many ways, beyond traditional medical care. We provide financial resources for treatments, emotional support, nutritional assistance for malnourished families, and educational resources to help individuals better understand their conditions.  

By participating on a Service Learning Trip, our MEDLIFE volunteers are not only providing much-needed medical care at the Mobile Clinic but also ensuring that communities receive holistic support beyond their week of service. 

Keep reading to learn more about some of the follow-up patients in Lima! 

Supporting Lima Follow-Up Patients

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MEDLIFE Mobile Clinics bridge the gap between communities with limited to no health resources and quality medical care - and that’s how we connect with patients like Señor Eder.

When we met Señor Eder, he was suffering from stomach pains. Having started eating less because it hurt too much, he was in critical need of quality healthcare but had limited access in his home community of Ventanilla. Staffed by local general practitioners, our clinic provided Señor Eder preferential treatment - a full physical exam and routine tests to figure out the cause. And when it was determined that additional tests were needed, he was enrolled in our patient follow-up program where he will continue to receive quality medical care and support from MEDLIFE until he is healthy again.

Liam

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When you meet Liam, you can’t help but smile. He is an energetic, happy 3-year-old boy from San Gabriel de Villa Maria Triunfo, a community on the outskirts of Lima, Peru. With all his energy, you almost can’t notice that he is unable to move his arm or hand.

Our MEDLIFE doctors have cited a possible circulation issue, but we don’t know for sure what’s wrong. Liam is enrolled in MEDLIFE’s Patient Follow-Up Program where doctors are administering tests to find the cause and hopefully a cure. But no matter what, our team of dedicated doctors and nurses are committed to supporting Liam and his family in any way possible to offer him a happy, healthy future.


To continue supporting our follow-up work, donate to the MEDLIFE Project Fund today! 

MEDLIFE is proud to announce an alliance with LATAM Airlines to fight against anemia in communities throughout Peru. With the support of an international airline, our Movement is able to expand our medical, education, and development work to new communities and empower hundreds of people in the fight for a world free from the constraints of poverty. 

Keep reading to learn more! 

Anemia: Malnutrition in Impoverished Communities 

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Anemia is a condition when your blood lacks enough healthy red blood cells, causing fatigue, hunger pains, pale complexion, and a host of other side effects. It is a global issue that impacts a large portion of Peru’s rural populations, mainly due to poor diet and living conditions caused by poverty. In fact, a census conducted by the Integrated Food Security Program (PISA) in Chiclayo identified that the prevalence of anemia was found to be 15% higher in communities considered ‘poor’ (1) — such as the ones where MEDLIFE works. 

In Peru, some studies have been conducted on the prevalence of anemia in rural areas, of which two groups prevail: children from 0 to 5 years of age and adolescents between 12 and 17 years of age (2).

The condition can largely be attributed to iron deficiency, occurring in both children and adolescents because they are in a period of rapid growth. During these growth stages, the body requires more iron and its deficiency could have two main negative effects on the person: decreased cognitive development and productivity. 

1. https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1177/15648265060274S406 
2. http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.3402/gha.v7.22888?scroll=top&needAccess=true

Building an Alliance 

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With the goal of connecting their primary platform, travel, and a larger social impact, LATAM Airlines Peru joined the Pachacutec Foundation to launch Cocineros que Vuelvan - Chefs that Fly - which aims to support young people in their dream of becoming a chef and in turn give back to their communities. The winners were selected to study at a top culinary school and as part of the award receives a Mobile Clinic in their home community. That’s where we step in. 

LATAM Airlines and MEDLIFE joined together to identify schools in the cities of Ayacucho, Jauja, and Jaén — the home communities of the winners — where we could work hand in hand to prevent and reduce iron deficiency in anemia.  

Our educational efforts will continue for two full academic years, during which time our MEDLIFE medical professionals will provide nutrition education workshops - for both parents and students. As with any of our educational workshops, we focus on teaching about how to live healthier lives, make intelligent decisions about their diet, and trying to implement a culture of preventative care. 

Spread across six schools in the three communities, our team of nurses is working hand in hand with 124 children to teach good nutritional habits and the benefits of eating well. Additionally, we are making home visits and hosting parent workshops to encourage families to support our efforts at home. 

LATAM Airlines has, in turn, supported us both financially and by giving our work recognition. The backing of an international airline extends our credibility and connects our organization with new opportunities to bridge the gap between impoverished communities and quality healthcare and education

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As our alliance continues, we hope to expand our reach and continue working toward our goal of preventing anemia in communities in Peru. More updates to come soon!

To provide long-term, quality healthcare, MEDLIFE’s work goes beyond a week of service - and facilities like the MED Vida Dental Clinic are a great example of how our efforts are made possible. Fully staffed by local dentists, MED Vida has proven to be a positive impact for hundreds of community members where we work in Lima, Peru

Keep reading to learn about the dental clinic’s story!  

MED Vida’s Foundation

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During a Mobile Clinic, the dental station is often the most requested services. However, due to a limited number of staff and supplies, dentists are only able to treat 15 patients a day. Furthermore, they are only able to offer basic treatments. 

Prior to the construction of MED Vida, if a patient required further treatment our team would be unable to provide the much-needed care at the clinic site. And while patients would be enrolled in our Patient Follow-Up Program, they often had to travel far from their community to receive quality dental care. Our team of professionals felt there must be a better solution.   

Thus, it was decided that a full-service, permanent dental clinic would be built in an easily accessible location for the communities MEDLIFE works with. In February 2018, we opened an office centrally located in the district of Villa María del Triunfo - where you can find hundreds of communities and over 3,000 community members that directly benefit from MEDLIFE’s work. With its convenient location, many of these community members can easily commute to the clinic to receive dental care. 

A Positive Impact

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Open six days a week, our Movement can now provide quality dental health to dozens of patients each week. Complete with a fully trained dental staff and technological equipment, our team offers community members cosmetic treatments and other walk-in services like at any other full-service dental clinic. Beyond that, we also refer patients that we meet on Service Learning Trips to MED Vida and provide them with care at subsidized costs. There are over 70 treatments and services available, including extractions, fillings, cleanings, and more. 

According to Dr. Jorge Vidal, who both oversees MED Vida and is a full-time dentist at the clinic, the greatest need for these communities comes from a lack of access to professional dentists. MED Vida has three full-time staff members as well as three specialists who can provide treatments. 

In addition to medical care, MED Vida serves as an outlet for dental health education. The dental professionals provide brochures and consultations on the importance of dental hygiene and care to help patients understand, prevent, and treat oral health conditions. Vidal pointed out that community members are generally not accustomed to preventative care. If they are coming to the clinic, they already have a problem. Through our educational efforts we are trying to change that mindset, he said. 

Year-Round Patient Care

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With permanent community structures like MED Vida or the MED Center for Primary Education, our organization can provide year-round sustainable care to community members - even when we don’t have active volunteers on Service Learning Trips. MEDLIFE works hand in hand with communities 24/7/365 to fight for equal access to health, education, and a safe home.  

If you feel inspired to continue our dental health work, sign up for a Dental Clinic Specialty Service Learning Trip or donate to the MEDLIFE Project Fund today! 

June 26, 2019 1:31 pm

Building Silvio a Safe Home

Written by Anjali Thakrar

To empower the poor in the fight for a world free from the constraints of poverty, our MEDLIFE Movement works side by side with communities to provide a safe home for everyone!

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At a Tena Mobile Clinic, Ecuador Director Martha Chicaiza asked a local school teacher which of her students was in the most need - and she said Silvio. The teacher explained Silvio and his sister were abandoned by their mother and their father had passed away, so they now live with their grandmother who does not have a job to provide the children with medical care and a safe home.

Martha and the Ecuador MED Programs team immediately went to the house and found him at home, sick with stomach pain due to parasites and laying on the wooden floor with a blanket draped over him. The house didn’t have any walls - only draped plastic garbage bags to protect them from the elements - and there were no beds or pillows. Silvio’s father had started building the house for his family but passed away before he could finish. 

After visiting Silvio, Martha determined that MEDLIFE would complete the house along with Sumak Kawsay Wasi, a government organization in Tena, and dedicated a Service Learning Trip group to facilitate the project. 

Sumak Kawsay Wasi hired professional architects and builders to construct the walls, while MEDLIFE volunteers helped paint the house and assemble beds for the family. They built shelves for every room as well as an adjustable flap door to cover the top of the staircase to prevent accidental falls down the stairs at night. Our team also supplied antiparasite medication to each of the family members to fight against any current or future infections. 

After almost 12 hours of work, the space was improved from a dangerous and uncomfortable structure to a safe home where Silvio and his family can live, learn, and grow. 

Silvio House


Continue supporting MEDLIFE as we fight for equal access to healthcare, education, and a safe home for all in the communities surrounding Tena, Ecuador by donating to the MEDLIFE Project Fund or signing up for a Service Learning Trip! 

When you meet Ventura Yumbo, there is no doubt his family means the world to him.

Our team met him and his family when Ecuador Director Martha Chicaiza reached out to the dirgentes - community leaders - and asked who MEDLIFE could support on future Mobile Clinics. They shared Ventura’s story.

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Ventura is a widower who cares for his 14 children, ranging from 9 months to 25 years old. They were living in two small houses deep in the thrush of the jungle, with only two beds which were shared amongst them all. His wife only having passed away seven months ago from diabetes, Ventura was still adjusting to caring for his family on his own.

Whenever MEDLIFE offers development support to a community member, Martha first visits the project site to make a plan. After visiting the family, it was determined that we would build a third house. Martha contacted Sumak Kawsay Wasi, a government organization in Tena, and dedicated a Service Learning Trip group to facilitate the project.

Once the volunteers arrived, our team jumped into action. MEDLIFErs hauled wood and supplies to the houses. Sumak Kawsay Wasi hired trained builders to work side by side with the volunteers to properly execute the construction of the house as well as a staircase leading up to the home. The original hillside was steep and muddy, and after hours of digging stairs and collecting and placing rocks, the Yumbo family had a staircase that provided a safer way to navigate the hill.

The youngest child, a 9-month-old baby, also had a severe ear infection due to dirty, matted hair being stuck to a cut on her ear. Nurse Valeria Maldonado cleaned the baby's ear and removed all the matted hair, and came back with antibiotics. She instructed the family on how to use them so the baby could heal.

Beyond the quality healthcare, education, and development that was offered, the MEDLIFErs wanted to ensure none of the children had to sleep on the bare floor of their new house. Together, they came up with $600 on the spot from the money they had on their person. With these additional funds, Martha purchased 8 beds, pillows, rice, and tuna for the family. An additional three suitcases of clothing were given to the entire family.

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MEDLIFE has worked hand in hand with Ecuador communities for nearly 15 years. Offering thousands of patients and communities spread across Tena, Riobamba, and Esmereldas medical, education, and development support - our work would not be possible without the MEDLIFE Movement.

To continue growing the Movement, sign up for a Service Learning Trip today!

The MEDLIFE Ecuador staff is a small group of women, but they work day in and day out to provide quality healthcare, education, and development to the communities surrounding Riobamba and Tena.

Keep reading to learn more about MEDLIFE’s work in Ecuador!

Community Meetings

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As we do in every MEDLIFE location, when the team in Ecuador gets introduced to a new community they start by listening to the community’s needs. MEDLIFE Ecuador Director Martha connects with the dirigentes, or community leaders, to organize community meetings. These are usually held on weekday nights after work to accommodate the community members’ busy schedules.

In the district of Punin - which is comprised of many smaller communities - we were first invited to a town hall. Our team listened to concerns from community members, which they were sharing with their dirigentes. Most of the indigenous population in the district speaks Quichua. So when it was Martha’s turn to speak, we made sure there was a translator to ensure everyone understood what was happening.

As part of these meetings, we hope to inspire new communities to collaborate on future Mobile Clinics and projects. Martha speaks clearly and plainly to the dirigentes, describing how MEDLIFE collaboration works and what would be required of them. She tells our MEDLIFE story, where we work, and what projects we have completed. She assures the community that we are a non-governmental and non-religious organization that provides quality healthcare and development free of charge - there are no catches or ulterior motives.

Additionally, Martha explains that we work with groups of volunteers on Mobile Clinics as part of an Ecuador Service Learning Trip, which can be organized and arranged in a location and time convenient for community members, and development projects to improve the communities. Some of the populations are quite small, with only 60 or so individuals, so the team also encourages dirigentes to choose a central location and invite all neighboring communities.  

Local Partnerships

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When MEDLIFE works with communities surrounding Tena, Ecuador, we often partner with the local government organization Sumak Kawsay Wasi that provides medical and development support to the communities in Napo Province.

Recently our organizations worked side by side to renovate the bathrooms at a local school. Unidad Educativa Emilio Cecco serves nearly 300 students - and they had been sharing just six toilets. Administrators had been asking the government for resources to improve the school’s infrastructure for years. But their proposals were continually denied, and they were unable to gather funds from the students’ families as most do not have the expendable income to donate. That’s where we stepped in.  

Together MEDLIFE and Sumak Kawsay Wasi were able to raise the necessary funds and provide volunteers for the project. MEDLIFErs cleared the space where the bathrooms would be built, shoveling away debris and trash, and leveled the land. From there they worked 50/50 with community members to install the toilets and walls.

Additionally, the new bathrooms offered handicap access to the restrooms for students with disabilities. With classrooms located on the other side of the school grounds, it was difficult for some students to make the trip to the old facilities. The new bathrooms were built directly next to the classroom, with an accessible pathway, to provide easier access for all students.

The partnership between MEDLIFE’s Ecuador Team and Sumak Kawsay Wasi is a great example of our efforts at 24/7/365 support beyond an Ecuador Service Learning Trip. When we work with local organizations, we have the opportunity to reach more impoverished communities and people in our fight for a world free from the constraints of poverty.


Does working hand in hand with Ecuadorian Communities sound like an impactful experience for you?

Sign up for an Ecuador Service Learning Trip today!

One of the central pillars of the MEDLIFE Movement is providing quality education.

Many of the communities we work with are faced with poor infrastructure meaning that school rooms are small or non-existent and they are not built to properly shelter children from the elements, as well as a lack of resources for teachers. MEDLIFE stepped in to fill the gap by introducing a long-term, sustainable solution: the MED Center for Primary Education.   A variety of free educational programs for children and adults are offered at the MED Center for Primary Education.

From March to June this year, students from the Universidad del Pacifico in Lima are offering their time and talents leading workshops for children age 5 to 12 every Sunday at the MED Center for Primary Education. Covering a variety of community-selected topics - from English language to practical communication skills - these workshops aim to empower the youth in impoverished communities surrounding Lima.

Keep reading to learn more!  

Creating a Partnership

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Following a successful collection of youth enrichment classes at the MED Center for Primary Education during the summer (December to March in the Southern Hemisphere), community members asked MEDLIFE to continue course offerings during the school year. While our team was eager to continue the program, we were faced with a tactical issue: the volunteers facilitating classes would be returning to school as well and therefore would be unable to participate in the program.

Upon hearing about the issue, volunteer instructor Katya Haro Köell who studies at the Universidad del Pacifico and had also coordinated previous workshops at the MED Center for Primary Education reached out to MED Program Education Intern Ariana Cerna and proposed the idea of an alliance between MEDLIFE and the university. With the communities facing a need for quality education, Katya stated the partnership would be a great way to give back and potentially benefit both institutions.

A meeting was coordinated with the Universidad del Pacifico’s Servicio Social Program Director Katia Gonzales Becerra, where it was agreed that the school would include the MED Center for Primary Education on the approved list of organizations where students could volunteer and earn practicum course credit toward their degree requirements. Once students signed up to work with MEDLIFE, they were committed to fulfill their volunteer requirements for the remainder of their practicum course. Thus, a partnership was created.

With these new volunteers, MEDLIFE is guaranteed to have hardworking, bright students working in the MED Center for Primary Education. As part of the partnership, 20 volunteers are teaching each Sunday - offering nearly a 1:1 student to teacher ratio.  

In return, MEDLIFE provides student volunteers with the opportunity to complete their required practicum course credit, coupled with a two-day field education training prior to their participation covering teaching methodology strategies, leadership techniques, and the structured creation of workshops. Volunteer teachers also have the opportunity to gain hands-on experience working with students with different realities from their own.

MEDLIFE’s Support 24/7/365

Partnership with Pacifico

MEDLIFE works year-round in our efforts to grow the Movement. We have developed a patient follow-up program in order to support our patients after a Mobile Clinic, and we have full-time, in-country staff members who continue to work hand in hand with communities after our volunteers return home.

The partnership between the MED Center for Primary Education and Universidad del Pacifico is another great example of our efforts at sustainable education services. As we continue growing the MED Center for Primary Education - both physically and with expanded educational opportunities - local support from established organizations in Peru like Universidad de Pacifico is a great advantage to our program offerings.

You can also support MEDLIFE’s year-round work by participating in a Service Learning Trip or donating to the MEDLIFE Project Fund.

Stay tuned for more updates on MEDLIFE’s partnerships in local communities soon!

April 5, 2019 11:06 am

Patient Story: Carol

Written by Caroline Appert

We’d like to introduce you to Carol, one of MEDLIFE’s follow-up patients in Lima, Peru. Her story is intense and complex, especially for being only 18 years old, but we would like to share it with you in hopes that it may inspire you to take action to support her situation.

At 15, Carol gave birth to her first child with a partner who was physically and emotionally abusive, secluded her from family and friends, and refused to get her medical attention. She remained out of touch with her family until about a year and a half later, when she showed up on her parent’s porch 5 months pregnant with another child. Her partner had not allowed her to go to any prenatal checkups. After much insisting, her mother Estela was able to take Carol to her first check-up at 7-8 months pregnant.

Carol

Carol and her partner then moved into her parents' home. Carol’s partner was constantly coughing but refused to seek medical treatment. Carol then began to suffer from headaches and a decline in her general health. With her condition worsening, her partner ran away with their oldest child, who was 3 years old at the time. The family had no way to track them down. They have filed a police report but there have been no updates.

Around this same time, Carol and her newborn were diagnosed with syphilis. Estela is worried that the 3-year-old might have it too, but doubt that Carol’s partner would seek medical attention for the child in any case.

Carol has since been diagnosed with tuberculosis and is now bedridden. Her primary caretaker is her mother. Estela and her husband Guzman, Carol's step-father, do everything they can to support Carol: buy her the supplies she needs, and make all the necessary doctor appointments, but the reality of their situation is grave and they need support.

MEDLIFE’s History with Carol

Carol came to a MEDLIFE Mobile Clinic in 2017 with gynecological concerns. After the clinic, we were able to deliver the medicine she needed based on her diagnosis, but two months later we went to check on Carol as a part of our patient follow-up protocol, and she had moved. None of the neighbors knew where she had gone, nor how to get in contact with her.

In December 2018, Carol’s mother came to another MEDLIFE Mobile Clinic. She asked for a doctor to visit her sick daughter in their home. Without knowing who the patient was, MEDLIFE staff, a doctor, and a few volunteers headed to the family’s home to visit the patient, and from this chance encounter, we became reconnected with Carol.

MEDLIFE immediately enrolled Carol into our patient follow-up program once again and has since learned the details of her story and medical condition. At this point, the tuberculosis has spread to her brain and caused permanent damage. Carol is currently bedridden, has almost no motor skills, and is barely verbal, but she is conscious and aware - improving ever so slightly.

When we first came to Carol’s home in late December 2018, she was nonverbal. When we visited again in early March 2019, she was able to hold her own feeding tube and nod her head. She can stick her tongue a little bit out of her mouth and sits up for short periods of time if properly supported. Estela tells us that a few weeks ago Carol was able to say “Mama” for the first time since becoming so ill. This gives Estela and their family hope, as it contrasts from the prognosis they were given in July when the doctor who evaluated Carol was told she had a week to live.

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Guzman works and has access to insurance, but since Carol became ill after she turned 18 she is ineligible to use that insurance. Carol is on Peru’s national safety-net health insurance network, Seguro Integral de Salud (SIS), and is getting treatment from Maria Auxiladora Hospital where they often have to wait up to two hours past their appointment time to be seen. This insurance also does not cover the cost of the other supplies needed for the treatment.

Though the family has received support from a local TV show, a local church, and Partners in Health (Socios en Salud), they still lack basic necessities to properly care for Carol in their home.


For now, we hope to support Carol by improving her and her family’s quality of life in any small scale way we can. You can contribute by donating to the MEDLIFE General Fund or signing up for a Service Learning Trip. Any donations fundraised for Carol will go toward purchasing items that will support her treatment and care.

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