Partner: International Medical Relief
Program Cost & Application Fee:$1,900
Estimated Economy Airfare:$1,500
About the mission: This beautiful trip starts and ends in Pucallpa, Peru. Located on the Ucayali River in eastern Peru, Pucallpa is a place that few tourists go but they are missing out! Sloths and monkeys abound in this port city that is the gateway to the jungle. You will find a port city combining the modern with the old with a touch of mythical creatures thrown in for good measure! Laguna Yarinacocha, about 15 minutes from town, shelters wildlife, including many varieties of monkeys, sloths, river dolphins, and birds of every size and color. Pucallpa, in addition to being a jumping off point for Amazon expeditions, is home to the Shipibo-Conibo indigenous people, and suffers from serious flooding annually.
The Shipibo-Conibo people are an indigenous tribe living along the Ucayali River in the Amazon rainforest in Perú. The Shipibo (apemen) and the Conibo (fishmen) were originally distinct tribes until they became one people based on shared traditions and beliefs and intermarriage. They are becoming more urbanized in order to survive but are fighting to keep their traditions, including utilizing traditional spiritual brews in rituals and shamans for their medical care. Your team will provide care for many of the Shipibo-Conibo people as you work in the small villages along the river. You will have an opportunity to learn about the rich culture of this beautiful and unique area, where the people are passionate about their religion, their crafts, and their traditions.
About the clinic: The World Bank and the World Health Organization stated in a 2009 study that these indigenous peoples are viewed as needing full assistance to solve their multiple health problems . IMR is working in collaboration with local partners to help those suffering from life threatening diseases. We will provide medical and dental care and health education to these otherwise untouched people groups. Your team will see many patients with infections, wounds, and common health problems that are frequently untreated. Dental needs are among the most troubling, with patients suffering from horrific pain from infected teeth without care other than home remedies.
Annual flooding is a serious concern for the people of the Amazon River basin, with the associated skin issues, infections, and emotional loss that comes with major disasters. Dengue Fever and other mosquito-borne diseases are significant health concerns in this community. Providing education about mosquito-borne disease and providing supportive care for patients will be a primary task for our team. This trip is a wonderful opportunity to provide care for people who truly need the help.
We will be bringing some of the less accessible indigenous people into our clinic and will work closely with local medical students to care for them. If you love to teach, this is the trip for you!
About International Medical Relief: This trip is through International Medical Relief, a nonprofit providing mobile medical clinics and sustainable health education to undeserved communities in 57 countries around the world. IMR was founded on the belief that knowledge of basic health facts and access to healthcare should not be the prerogative of select nations, regions, or classes, but should be shared by as many people as possible. IMR contributes to the world’s communities by improving the overall health and wellness of the people via medical diagnosis and treatment, partnerships with local medical designees, community training, and fostering the principles of prevention.
If you are interested in more information or are thinking about applying for this trip, please contact the Making a Difference Foundation staff through the button below or call us at 866.608.1322.