Please support our 2021 FoodShare /Community Kitchen Program to help the needy residents of San Pedro Itzicán 
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With the current fear of COVID-19 - we cannot risk the already vulnerable people in these areas getting this illness because there is no medical facility nearby that can help.  To read more information on what we are doing right now for the COVID-19 situation, click HERE.   

 

For social distance reasons, all our educational programs have been suspended.  Our focus right now is to help people who need food - with emphasis particularly on providing food for the elderly and people with renal problems, and keeping our Community Kitchen program open to feed children.

On January 17, it was confirmed that there are 5 new Covid casesidentified in San Pedro Itzicán, so we need more oxygen concentrators.  Please read more about this by clicking on this link.  Please help us if you can.

When everything was shut down in mid-March, we were providing despensas (basic food supplies) to over 2,000 families - each week.  We also continued to support the more than 50 kidney patients in the villages east of Chapala with extra food and water. 
 
When things got a little calmer in August, and people were back working, the focus returned to the needs of the children.  So five days a week we have a meal program for 80 children.  But there are Covid and dengue cases in the community so we are still not able to continue our regular educational programs. 
And with the new lockdown that has just gone into effect, the decision is that the children must come and line up with their own bowls, and receive food to eat back at their home, as we cannot risk them getting sick by eating together.
If you are able to financially assist us with our work, it would be most appreciated.  Gracias!  

Thanks to the enormous support provided by FoodBank Lakeside and other generous donors, the despensas we were giving out each week included 1 kg each of rice, beans and lentils and fruits and vegetables when they are donated.  And we continue to help our renal patients with extra food. 

 

From mid March until mid-August we were having to raise over 100,000 pesos each week to pay for food (around $4,200 US a week).   

 

Of course we had not budgeted for the crisis but we did the best we could in the circumstances.  So all donations are still most happily accepted!  And we are most grateful for the support of

 FoodBank Lakeside
 

We collect food (meat bones) and other supplies from a number of businesses - and we cook those up to create meals for the Community Kitchen program for children. 
 
We have a group that donate Chickens for the Community Kitchen meals - the group is called the "Chicken Chicks & Roosters".  They pay for two chickens to be purchased each week to be cooked and used in the Community Kitchen program.  Our grateful thanks to them and Rita Phillips who coordinates them.

In early 2020, Anita (the Brigada leader), asked us to provide the monthly despensa for more families - which brings that total to 55 families. And she also asked us to provide a special despensa to families who have kidney patients, who need specific diets (50 patients) from Mezcala, San Pedro Itzican and Aqua Caliente.  This was all before Covid arrived... 

Do watch this new video on YouTube about how the FoodShare program has changed since COVID-19...  
In November 2018, our team member, Patricia Moran, started getting donations to provide monthly deliveries of fresh vegetables and fruit, dry goods of beans, rice, and other needed supplies that are given to families most in need.  Many really poor families need this help as they have no one else to help them.
So we are reaching out to ask if you can donate towards some food and dry goods and sanitary supplies for these families.  We are usually going out to San Pedro to deliver supplies, every Wednesday.  
If you can support this program we would be most grateful.  People really need help right now.  If you can help us, and would consider supporting us - just email us here and we will get back to you.
During our normal FoodShare program, because of our "A Hand up not a hand out", all the families receiving dispenses provide volunteer work in their community - such as clearing areas of garbage or helping with other projects.  So they are finding pride.  Of course that is not possible given the current COVID-19 crisis but we hope people will realize how invaluable the Brigada team is to their communities. 
Besides food, if you have anything to donate, we will pick up your donations, or you can drop them off at La Casa del Cacau, located on Boulevard Jin Xi in La Floresta, Ajijic.  Please mark your donations for "Poco a Poco" and we will make sure they are delivered, via the Brigada, to people in need.
Many people in these communities are facing many medical issues - especially renal failure.  in 2019, 18 people died from renal failure.  Many are young children!  This is terrible!  Children aged 5 years of age are already showing signs of renal failure.   (The most usual cause for this appears to be  1.  genetics, 2.  pollution and 3. malnutrition.) 
We can't do much about genetics (these small communities have many inter-family marriages), and pollution is probably due to the water from the lake where they bathe and drink the water if they have no money for bottled water.  Soda drinks are frequently drunk instead of healthier drinks - such as water.  (There is much distrust of the water provided by the city.) 
 
But there is also widespread malnutrition.  Young children, if not provided with enough protein and fresh vegetables or fruit, are very susceptible to renal failure.  Over 70 families in the area have been identified in 2020 as having renal failure patients in their households.  So sad.

A medical report that came out in late 2020 estimated that 4 out of every 10 children living in the San Pedro Itzicán area will have renal problems.  This is the link to the article in Spanish.  This is tragic.

© 2018, 2019 and 2020 by  "Poco a Poco" San Pedro Itzican

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