All first-time parents get a bit panicky when their child gets sick. For those of us fortunate enough to live where there is an abundance of resources, the panic is often unnecessary. At the first sign of our child’s cough or fever, we can simply make a quick visit to the pediatrician, where we can get answers and reassurance – and treatment for our child.
But for parents like María Jose and Elber, who live in a poor community in Guatemala, their panic was a bit more warranted. Their only son, Samuelito, was sick and clearly needed medicine, but they had no way to help him. Where they live, there is no public clinic nearby, and even the fee-for-service clinics are too far away and much too expensive for them to afford.
Then someone directed them to a local clinic that was founded by a group of churches and serves the needs of their particular neighborhood. One of the volunteer physicians at the clinic, Dr. Layla, was able to diagnose Samuelito with a respiratory infection. Now they had answers. But what about medicine?
Fortunately, MAP International has been partnering with this clinic for the last decade, and because of MAP’s Bringing Children Health program, Dr. Layla has access to quality children’s antibiotics. She was able to send Samuelito home with the medicine he needed, at no charge to his parents.
Because of MAP, Samuelito is now recovered and back to his old happy self – playing with his dog, keeping his pajamas on as long as possible, and walking down to the corner with his dad each morning when he leaves for work.
It’s easy to put a price on a bottle of medicine. But there is no way for a parent to quantify the value of their child’s health being restored. Thanks to MAP, Samuelito will be accompanying his father on their morning walks for many years to come.