The beginning of this year was overshadowed by concerns for the health of Maricela Sánchez, who suffered a serious relapse in January. Due to the acute risk of rejection of the transplanted kidney, she had been receiving treatment at the state-run Hospital de la Raza, where she was discharged despite unsatisfactory response to treatment. A few days later this led to a crisis that saw her at death’s door, which was only surpassed thanks to the intensive efforts of the team brought together by the doctor who had carried out the transplant at a small private clinic in Toluca. These unforeseen events consumed much of our modest budget at the start of the year, to the extent that meeting our other commitments proved difficult.
One such commitment was the purchase of hygienic water tanks by a larger number of Mazahua families in San Antonio de las Huertas. Since the price at which these were offered to us was very advantageous, we had promised to facilitate the purchase by advancing the larger part of the purchase price and the transport costs, in order to enable the buyers to pay for them in small installments. In May, 33 water tanks and 2 cisterns were delivered, with a similar number to come soon.
We were able to provide a wheelchair for a girl with mobility impairment in the same village, the price partly being covered by a spontaneous collection carried out by the women who have benefited from our project.
In February, the large-scale cultivation of mushrooms in the purpose-built shed proved to be a highly positive and encouraging experience. The product is currently much in demand in the village itself though in the medium term a number of options are being considered for selling it in the city. Don Ignacio Colín, an expert in mushroom growing who had provided excellent training to the people of San Antonio, was very pleased with the quality of the product and offered his support for selling it in the future.
For the disabled people of Tepexpan and Chiautla we paid our mechanic Noé Martínez to repair a further 13 manual wheelchairs. So far a total of 27 wheelchairs that were thrown away by the Tepexpan Hospital have been recovered. We also supplied a number of anti-bedsore mattresses and repairs to wheelchairs, together with walkers and sticks for older adults with mobility problems. Meanwhile, we continue to subsidize the gasoline costs for transporting disabled people to the Asociación Derribando Barreras rehabilitation center.
At a Regional Forum on the implementation of the International Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, jointly organized at the end of June by the Asociación Derribando Barreras and the National Human Rights Commission, we made a presentation about the many bureaucratic obstacles to the work of a small NGO like ours.
Finally, it may be noted that we continue to pay a small subsidy to support the transport cost and college fees of the nursing student who regularly informs us about her progress.