Reflecting and Returning to Oakland

Editor’s note: Umma Amina, RN, is a nurse at Kaiser Permanente Oakland Medical Center. She volunteers with the Glens Falls Medical Mission Foundation, which since 1996 has served the needs of underrepresented populations in Guatemala. She returned to Guatemala this month and sent this dispatch on April 16.

The mission has ended, but the feeling of compassion, gratitude and healing lives on and I am forever grateful for the experiences this mission gives me.Umma1

Each year upon returning from Guatemala there is a slight culture shock that occurs. I walk into my closet and see an abundance of shoes. Why do I have five  pairs of black shoes and some of my patients in Guatemala have no shoes?

I turn on the faucet and have an abundance of water. Why do I have so much clean water and some of my patient’s in Guatemala have no access to clean water?

Umma2I walk into work at Kaiser Permanente in Oakland and have access to an abundance of medical equipment, medical technology and medical personnel who provide high quality medical care. This is why I go to Guatemala: because I am thankful and so blessed to live and be where I am that I feel compelled to help those who do not have access to medical care.

I look forward to Spring 2014 and more time with the beautiful people of Guatemala. Muchas Gracias for reading this blog…Umma3

” Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow has not yet come. We only have today. Let us begin.”
-Mother Teresa

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2 responses to “Reflecting and Returning to Oakland

  1. Abner Carlos Trejo Franco

    I have ten years of work for Glens Falls Medical Mission Foundation, eight volunteer and two as a coordinator in Guatemala, God bless you for all the hard work and big sacrifice that you do for my country and my people, health is very important but knowledge is more important to continue healthy, you provide both, that’s why my people improving every day, every time lasnecesidades are bigger but everything improves education and health, are an extraordinary group of people one hundred percent humanitarian do not forget that every day we take them into our hearts and our minds, on behalf of all my people, thank you very much, Muchas Gracias, Que Dios los Bendiga, hugs from Guatemala

  2. Nicely put my friend, I agree with all of the above. It certainly takes a few weeks to get used to being home again. Loved the blog.

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