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Entered By: Mark
Entry Date: 2009-10-08 22:09:59
Subject: Follow Up on Gerardo, Hope

Tomorrow, Paula goes back to visit Gerardo and prepare his temporary home near the hospital. Paula is the best qualified person I know to make a nest for him! We will all be taking terms staying with Gerardo and making sure he gets his follow up treatment.

Paula said a lot of things about hope and the opposite. She did not write everything, because it was not the proper thing to do. If you know me, you know I'm not proper.

What Paula has seen in the patient rooms is a lot of people pandering to kidney patients by giving them a lot of food and beverages that they should never touch! Without working kidneys, there's nothing to remove the deadly toxins from your body found in modern food, ie Coca Cola (big addiction in this country), salty snacks, food with colorants; basically everything eaten on a daily basis by most of us. The other children are sick and bloated because they are full of bad food and beverages. She's seen both parents and mission groups from here and abroad give the children exactly what the doctors have told them not to eat and drink! This happens even in the hospital!

Coca Cola is probably drunk here as much as water. You should not drink the water from your faucet here unless you want to be sick. Therefore, the people have to purchase their beverages. If a bottle of water is about the same price as a bottle of Coke, that's a no-brainer to a kid. Kidney failure seems to so rampant in Honduras that you have to wonder what would it be like if clean water was readily available.

So, that is one way she has seen hopelessness, the patients simply not taking care of themselves and the parents caving in. The children ask for things they are not supposed to have and it is given to them even though it endangers their lives.

There are cases of children just not showing up for dialysis on a regular basis. Much of this has to do with the parents not having the means to transport their child to the hospital across the country three times weekly. The bus fare for two to Tegucigalpa and back equates to a weekly salary for most people here, IF they have regular work (most don't). When the children do not make it to dialysis, the doctors call the child protective services (called IHNFA here); the children are taken from their parents and put into a large child center near the hospital. The conditions there are horrible, but at least the children make it to dialysis.

Through seeing all this, we really believe there is a need and a call to help the children on dialysis. We would really like to provide an alternative to the large, juvenile hall type facility that the children are put into when taken from their parents. In this home, the children could be given proper food and drink. They would be removed from dangerous settings. They would be close to the hospital where they must visit three times per week. I pray that this could happen. It is a need. Several children have asked Gerardo if they could come live with us. Gerardo wanted them to. We just don't have the funding to bus them to and from dialysis so frequently and the trip takes all day.

Of course, long term, it has always been our vision to bring fresh, clean, potable water to the masses of Honduras. That is the only way we are going to see any kind of relief from disease here. I've read that 90% of the world's health problems are from bad water. We live in such a country right now. When a bottle of soda costs the same as water, there is something wrong!

I want to thank everyone that has helped over the past year with Gerardo. Your donations and prayers have kept Gerardo alive.  You have made it possible to get him to dialysis without missing a single day! Even when the capital had riots or the highways were shut down, Gerardo still made it through. In the beginning, it was rough for Gerardo and he once told us he just wanted to die. Your support has shown him that the Lord and his people care about a young boy and his future. Gerardo is a bright, funny kid and good student. You have made a difference in this world!

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