Please visit our new campaign, Help Bob go on a medical mission to Laredo, TX
Help Bob provide medical care to the needy!
$140 Raised
35% of $400 goal
6 contributors
0 days left
Ended Sep 21, 2014
I am going on a week long medical mission to Laredo, TX to provide medical care the the poor of that region. In addition to donating a week of time, each missionary has to pay a $800 fee to cover the travel expenses of the trip. I have already paid ... More ...
I am going on a week long medical mission to Laredo, TX to provide medical care the the poor of that region. In addition to donating a week of time, each missionary has to pay a $800 fee to cover the travel expenses of the trip. I have already paid $400 of this fee myself and now am reaching out to my friends to help me pay the balance of $400 (or maybe a little more to cover the care of my dogs while I am away). Please help however you can. Any donation, no matter how small or big, will be greatly appreciated. If you would prefer to send me a check you can send it to me at 6606 Harbourside Ln, Missouri City, TX, 77459.
Here is some information about the medical mission:
This year we will be our fifth year for Providing Medical and Spiritual Mission services to the Diocese of Laredo. We will for the third year have our Central Mission Site in Laredo at San Luis Rey and also serve three outreach communities including the town of Zapata at Our Lady of Lourdes Church and the Colonias of El Cenizo and Rio Bravo from one outreach site at Santa Monica Mission in El Cenizo, Texas. Our planning meeting for the 2013 Mission will be in early September with Most Reverend Bishop James A. Tamayo. Rebecca Solloa of Catholic Social Services in the Diocese of Laredo will be our personal guide to Laredo and Zapata churches and the outreach mission church at El. Cenizo.
The “colonias” along the border are unique communities of immigrant workers, some which have been in Laredo for decades. The best description we have of “colonias” is from the Federal Reserve Bank. I quote from their article.
“Colonia is a Spanish term for neighborhood or community. In Texas, colonia refers to an unincorporated settlement that may lack basic water and sewer systems, paved roads, and safe and sanitary housing.”
“Colonias can be found in Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California, but Texas has both the largest number of colonias and the largest colonia population. The colonia population is predominately Hispanic; 64.4 percent of all colonia residents and 85 percent of those residents under 18 were born in the United States. There are more than 1,400 Texas colonias, located primarily along the state’s 1,248 mile border with Mexico. Many have a very limited property tax base and are either isolated in a rural area or outside city limits. Cities are often hesitant to annex colonias because city residents do not want to share the financial burden of providing services to colonia residents.’’
“The development of Texas colonias dates back to at least the 1950s. Using agriculturally valueless land, land that lay in floodplains or other rural properties, developers created unincorporated subdivisions. They divided the land into small lots, put in little or no infrastructure, then sold them to low-income individuals seeking affordable housing. People often buy the lots through a contract for deed, a property financing method whereby developers typically offer a low down payment and low monthly payments but no title to the property until the final payment is made. Houses in colonias are generally constructed piecemeal by their owners and may lack electricity, plumbing and other basic amenities.’’
‘’For basic health and human services, environmental services and capital improvements, colonia residents must rely on an often confusing combination of local, state and federal programs, many of which come and go, depending on the political and economic climate.’’
‘‘A lack of medical services compounds health problems in the colonias. Hidalgo Health Director Dr. Omar Garza says “Hidalgo County, ….. Texas has 7,682 patients per primary care provider, compared with a national average of 1,000 to 1. Based on those numbers, the county is categorized as medically underserved. In addition to a shortage of primary care providers, colonia residents’ difficulty in accessing health care is compounded by other factors, including having to travel long distances to health care facilities, fear of losing wages for time spent away from work, inconvenient health care facility hours, lack of awareness of available health care programs and no health insurance. As a result, many colonia residents’ health care problems go unreported and untreated. For children, these barriers can be devastating and may result in slow growth and lower educational development rates.’’ There are over 250,000 people living this way with inadequate health care along the border.”
This is where Medical Missionaries of Divine Mercy and St. Laurence Parish, and the Diocese of Laredo can make a difference. There is minimal charitable health care service in the area, especially for adults. Bishop Tamayo wants us to participate in improving health conditions in the area and simultaneously promote and publically continue to launch the services of Catholic Social Services and the Religious organizations who serve the area.
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