Medical mission to embera communities in Colombia

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(Spanish HERE)

The department of Chocó has the highest poverty rate in Colombia (60%) and an Unsatisfied Basic Needs Index of 80%, including almost no access to health services. In the north of this department, in the basin of the Salaqui River, is located the Salaqui Paravando indigenous reservation, with a population of 1635 inhabitants.

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, seven communities in Salaqui Paravando have been in complete isolation for more than six months. In addition to the serious difficulties to ensure the daily subsistence of the families, the health conditions of the communities have worsened considerably with no possibility of receiving assistance. Dengue fever, malaria, malnutrition and gastrointestinal infections are just some of the diseases that are currently afflicting children, pregnant women, adults, the elderly and the adult population in general.

In response to the health emergency affecting the communities, the Major Indigenous Cabildo of the Bajo Atrato – CAMIZBA has decided to make a call for solidarity in order to obtain donations (economic or in kind) to run a health brigade with volunteer medical staff, which for an estimated time of 10 days will provide primary assistance to the sick and carry out prevention campaigns for the population. Because these communities have only river access, the costs of food and transportation for the health brigade are quite high. In addition, medicines and biosecurity and hygiene supplies will be provided for the 375 families in the reserve. A detailed list of the resources needed for this important humanitarian mission follows:

Healthcare staff: 8 physicians, 4 nurses, 1 social worker

Protective and biosafety implements for the prevention of COVID-19: Masks, gloves, face shields or goggles, antiseptic alcohol, antibacterial gel, biosafety suits

Hygiene implements: Liquid hand soap, Chlorine

Essential medicines for the treatment of: Diarrhea and dehydration, Gastrointestinal colic, Dengue, Antiparasites, Antibiotics in general

Food and transportation: Fuel for 10 boats, with capacity for 5 people each: $ 5’110.000 COP / 1120 EUR / 1325 USD; Drinking water: $ 200,000 COP / 44 EUR / 52 USD; Food for medical staff and volunteers: $ 4’000.000 COP / 880 EUR / 1035 USD

NOTE: Depending on the results of this campaign, it is expected that the medical-humanitarian mission will take place no later than the beginning of November (or even earlier, if possible). Updates on the progress of the campaign will be posted.

If you can make an in-kind donation, or for any additional information about the campaign, please leave us a message.


(In order to fulfill GoFundMe’s requirements, this donation campaign is administered by a group of CAMIZBA friends in Europe. The funds collected will be transferred by them in full to the bank account provided by CAMIZBA, and the records of each transaction will be available on this page.)

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