Thursday, March 21, 2013

Clínica El Buen Pastor, Santa María del Real, Olancho, Honduras

Last month, along with 13 volunteer architects and engineers from the U.S. and Canada, I traveled to Honduras to serve Clínica El Buen Pastor by designing a new facility.

El Buen Pastor serves the rural poor from the area surrounding Santa María del Real and Catacamas, about a 4-1/2 hour drive from the capital, Tegucigalpa.

Although Honduras has socialized medical care, the rural poor are often reluctant to enter the cities where it is provided and even at reasonable prices are unable to afford the care.  El Buen Pastor targets this group of people by providing a facility that intentionally appears less afluent and by charging half the going rate for service.

The existing clinic, located in the small town of Santa María del Real, has been plagued by increasing gang violence, even shootings on their doorstep.  As a result, the poor that they are called to serve are afraid to come to the clinic and the clinic staff themselves are at risk.

El Buen Pastor purchased a new site about two kilometers outside of town, in a rural area to build a replacement facility and asked Engineering Ministries International to help them with the design.

During our time in Honduras, the team gained and understanding of the program for the new clinic, researched what materials and methods are appropriate there, and presented a schematic design for the facility that was approved by the ministry.

Now that we´ve all returned home, the volunteers, the interns in this office and I are working together to complete the documents for construction of this new facility with the intent to provide them to the ministry in July of this year.

One of the volunteers put together a video of the project that shares a glimpse of what the project is like.  I hope you enjoy it.


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