Bringing the First Health Care to Rural Village After Hurricane
“There hasn’t been anybody to help us since the hurricane before Project HOPE arrived.”
Mirldred lives in Penelas bo Rucio Sector La Hayce, a rural mountainous region in the municipality of Ponce in Puerto Rico. She lives there with her father, mother-in-law, husband and daughter.
Because of their remote location, Mirldred and her family have seen little help since the hurricane.
When the Project HOPE medical team arrived in Bo Rucio Penuelas in late October, it was the first medical care her family had received since the storm.
“I have been taking insulin for diabetes and medicine for my thyroid,” Mirldred said. “Before the hurricane I only had one vile of insulin. I am supposed to use insulin three times per day at 50 units each dose, but now I am only able to use 50 units of insulin at night. I also use metformin twice per day. Without the right amount of insulin I feel tired and my blood sugar was 200-250.”
Like many, Mirldred’s family is still facing a long road to recovery. The hurricane ripped off part of the roof of her house – her family’s beds, clothes and documents have all been destroyed from continuing rains. Her water system was also ruined from the raging storm, forcing her to make difficult choices. “I started drinking both river water and filtered water because the municipality isn’t providing enough water for my family. I give the bottled water to my daughter and I drink the filtered water,” she said.
Her father has Alzheimer’s and his mental health is deteriorating even more since the hurricane. “I have a lot of stress now and I cry a lot and I don’t have time to rest. However, I consider myself somewhat fortunate, because some people lost their house entirely,” she said.
Mirldred is grateful for the health support provided by Project HOPE. Keeping her blood sugar level is one less worry. “There hasn’t been anybody to help us since the hurricane before Project HOPE arrived.”
“People should donate to Project HOPE,” she said. “We had been for weeks without medical care until Project HOPE reached our community. Donations are helping my people return to their normal life and providing primary health care to hard to reach communities like mine.”