This blog post is part of a series recounting the trips of volunteers to the clinic in Ahuas, Honduras.
I had the opportunity to travel to Ahuas with a team from Door County, Wisconsin in February 2018. Our goals on the trip included improving the plumbing system, painting throughout the clinic, and helping to install rainwater collection tanks. The water system at the clinic is reliant on pumping the groundwater that is necessary to keep the operation of the clinic going every day. However, during the rainy season the wells dry up, and the problem is further compounded by leaking pipes and toilets throughout the facility. So we spent several days trying to fix leaks and replace pipes to try to conserve what little groundwater they had, while they still had it. We further installed rainwater tanks that would later be connected to a series of rainwater collection gutters, in hopes that the clinic could collect enough water in the rainy season to last through the dry season once the wells dried up. It was good and meaningful work, and we were reasonably successful, though problems still exist.
More importantly, the people of Ahuas had a lasting impact on me. They are so resilient and so full of joy. We had the opportunity one day to visit the school where we passed out school supplies and tennis balls. Just the chance to throw tennis balls around the yard with the school children was memorable. With the smiles on their faces and the joy that they brought to us, it was easy to forget that they lived in some of the poorest conditions that we could imagine. Here is a picture of that wonderful day: