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As soon as I was visible to her across the parking area some 60 feet away, I heard, “Hello! Welcome, my friend.” It was said slowly with a strong Spanish accent. The senior nun practices her English on me every chance she gets.

Eighty percent of the people of Ixcán, Guatemala live below the poverty line and 27% live in extreme poverty. The Santa Teresita clinic is always busy.

It is also always a cheerful, friendly place. The sisters are quick to smile and stop for a brief conversation. On our August trips to Ixcán we stay at the clinic. They have rooms where visitors can sleep. Besides being a happy place, this is probably the cleanest and most secure spot in town.

During our clinic days here we take over the central entrance area and one large room and may see up to 350 people a day. The line never seems to end. And, the change in patient flow we cause for the sisters’ clinic doesn’t faze the nuns at all. They welcome us because we are offering a service, eye care, these people can find nowhere else in Ixcán.

We’re not only providing eye care, we’re building friendships. Please click the donate button on the right to help us help them.