While beaches are one of the top destinations for college students during Spring Break, 20 Texas A&M International University students will travel to the interior of Nicaragua Friday, March 4 to conduct volunteer work for a community there.
The students will represent TAMIU and Laredo as volunteers with Global Medical Brigades, an international non-profit organization that empowers communities to meet their health and economic goals through university volunteers and local teams.
During their stay in Matagalpa, Nicaragua, Global Brigades staff will assist TAMIU students in transforming a local elementary school into a fully functioning mobile clinic, complete with consultation rooms and a pharmacy. During their stay, the student volunteers will also develop water systems affecting the homes of each community member.
TAMIU Global Medical Brigades members pictured from bottom to top, left to right are: Elisa Saldívar, Queabet Pérez, Rebekah Kawas, Leslie Romero, Melissa Marchan, Aurora Barrios, Irais Neira, Sara Gutiérrez, Caroline Pagette, Dalia Garza, Mabi Vézquez, Erendira Pérez, Mitzi Ramirez, Ana Martinez, Vanessa Nuñez, César Villarreal, Adriel Mota, and Rupert González.
Nicaragua’s poverty level is at an all-time high, thus leaving its citizens in insufficient access of healthcare and medical attention, said Rebekah Kawas, Global Medical Brigades Laredo Chapter president. In Laredo, TAMIU students have made the decision to lend a helping hand. Through months of preparation and commitment, they will be able to impact an indigenous community while learning about global awareness and community service, she added.
Laredo’s chapter of Global Medical Brigades has raised over $59,000 since its inception in 2014, Kawas said.
“This is to support world empowerment and development efforts in Central America,” she said, “Immediate Brigade efforts are centered on providing pharmaceuticals, school supplies, and basic healthcare attention to families in need.”
Long-term efforts will be focused on enhancing education in community members and effectively allowing them to build a sustainable lifestyle, she said.
Last year, a TAMIU student group traveled to Panama with Global Medical Brigades to conduct a similar community improvement activity.
TAMIU Global Medical Brigade students traveling to Nicaragua include Ana Martínez, Aurora Barrios, Adriel Mota, Caroline Pagette, Cesar Villarreal, Dalia Garza, Elisa Saldívar, Erendira Pérez, Irais Neira, Leslie Romero, Lucinda Duarte, Mabi Vázquez, Melissa Marchan, Mitzi Ramírez, Myrna Castro, Queabet Pérez, Rebekah Kawas, Ruperto González, Sara Gutiérrez, and Vanessa Nuñez.
For more information, please contact Mayra Hernandez, TAMIU Global Medical Brigades advisor, at 326.2288, e-mail email@example.com or visit offices located in Student Center, room 226D.