Programs and Projects
Healthy Families and Healthy Communities
The Derksen Dental Clinic
Poor nutrition and poverty result in poor oral health. Dental care is unaffordable to families who worry about what they will eat today. CIDC funded the formation of Grupo Medico Salud y Espiritu (Health and Spirit Medical Group working with local partners to establish a dental clinic to serve the people of the community.
Canadian Darryl Derksen enthusiastically took on the fundraising for the construction and equipping of the Clinic at La Cosecha. He put his heart and all his skills into making it happen. Then he built on that success by inspiring and motivating experts, professionals and technicians to step forward and operationalize the dream of providing free dental care in the impoverished neighbourhoods of Progresso and Magisterio on the fringes of Puerto Vallarta.
Darryl recruited dentists, hygienists, interpreters, drivers, dental specialists, a host of supporters, family, friends, strangers, and strangers who became friends. His enthusiasm and energy for the project inspired confidence in the people who came hesitantly to the door enquiring whether they could see the dentist and asking if it is really free for them. Darryl gave them his great big smile, loving kindness and respect as he helped them seek the care they needed. The clinic is dedicated in his honour.
Volunteer dentists from Canada and the US offer free dental care every Wednesday and Friday from October to May assisted by volunteer interpreters and hygienists. During the summer the clinic is open on Fridays with Dr. Jahkov, a Mexican dentis who volunteers his time.
La Cosecha Free Medical Clinic
In Mexico not everyone can access health care through workplace insurance or private insurance. The level of free medical care for many is non-existent except for basic emergencies. In the outlying neighbourhoods of the city accessible medical care, women and baby care, preventative programs and are rare.
Compassionet Impact Development Canada built and outfitted a drop-in medical clinic in the same facility as the Derksen Dental Clinic at La Cosecha. We began with a "Brigada Medica", a pop-up clinic manned by local doctors and visiting volunteers who delivered a week of First Aid, medical assesments, and public education sessions on Nutrition and Diabetes Prevention. On another occasion 'Glasses for Missions' ran a two-day training and diagnostic session and made more than 100 pairs of custom glasses for adults and children.
In 2018, the Medical Clinic at La Cosecha opened its doors every Wednesday and Saturday mornings with a nurse and doctor seeing patients from the surrounding area. Pharmacies continue to donate commonly prescribed medications so the doctors can give prescriptions without any charge since so many cannot afford medicine.