2014 Amigos – Enfoque Ixcán trip tops them all!

2014 Amigos present baby clothes to the Sisters at the Clinic

2014 Amigos present baby clothes to the Sisters at the Clinic

Another trip to Ixcán with Amigos Eye Care is completed. They always go by so quickly. This year we set some new records for numbers of people seen, glasses dispensed and referrals made for eye surgeries.

A young boy gets his first glasses -- and he needed them!

A young boy gets his first glasses — and he needed them!

Every day was busy!! On two of our four clinic days we worked until well after sundown, using head lamps to complete the day, and not getting to dinner until nearly 9 pm. By the end of the week we had seen 1,369 people, dispensed 632 pairs of glasses and referred 51 patients for professional care.

Our Pacific University students were terrific. They not only worked hard and each day hit the ground running, but they also stayed focused with very little sickness to disrupt our work. When the long line of people waiting to see us didn’t shorten up as the days pressed on, no one got frustrated, but instead pushed ahead with an energy equal to the heat and humidity we were working in.

Finally we can see the end of the line

Finally we can see the end of the line

The optometrists on the trip were exceptional. One day Hoang Cao and I presented a 2 hour workshop for a group of 27 Ixcán nurses, while Brian Arvidson and Kelvin So kept working on that never ending line. Our local eye health promoters, Arnulfo, Felipe and David kept the line of people in order gathering case history information and discussing the details of planned eye surgeries trips with patients.

All in all, I don’t think it could have worked out any better. Thanks to everyone who had a part in this exceptional trip.