El Escobal

  • Overview
  • Medical
  • Dental
  • Water
  • Business
  • Public Health

Overview

El Escobal a small community is located in the province of Coclé, west of Panama City. A typical house there is made of concrete blocks, wood, or “quincha” (mud and straw). El Escobal does not have a school; children walk to the nearby community of El Limón for primary school and then they must travel up to an hour for the nearest secondary school. Most of the community members work in agriculture or creating artisan crafts. There is no health post in the community. The nearest health post is in El Limón, which is sometimes attended by a health assistant. The nearest health center is in the community of La Pintada, which means community members must wait for a bus and pay each way to visit a doctor. All of the homes in El Escobal are connected to a gravity-fed aqueduct, but the water does not reach homes in the upper part of the community. Most of the homes in the community have pit latrines and showers, but they could benefit from more sturdy construction. El Escobal does not have a community bank that offers savings and loans services. The top needs expressed by the community were: improved access to healthcare, water, and electricity.

District: Penonome

Province: Coclé

Homes : 35
Population : 100
Water System : Yes-- in need of repairs
Community Bank : No
Electricity : No
Health Center : No- closest in La Pintada
Community Health Workers : No
Homes with sanitation service : 100%
Education : Nearest school in El Limón
Closest GB lodging facility : Las Iguanas

Medical

Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete

HEALTH CARE ACCESS

Even though Panama is considered a country with a lot of economic growth, this growth doesn’t necessarily apply to all Panamanians, especially those in the rural areas. This results in large inequality when it comes to healthcare attention. As a consequence, access to health and dental care is one of the largest challenges for our partner communities. Hospitals and clinics are scarce in the rural areas where we work, and those that are accessible often lack proper staff, equipment, and medication.

The most prevalent illnesses in children in El Escobal are common cold, diarrhea, asthma. The most prevalent illnesses in adults are high blood pressure, fever, common cold, and diabetes.

Global Brigades does not send Medical Brigades in El Escobal because they do not have a school to host clinics. Community members from El Escobal attend Medical Brigades in the nearby community of El Limón.

COMMUNITY HEALTH WORKERS

The community of El Escobal does not yet have Community Health Workers trained by Global Brigades. Global Brigades Panama Medical Program is working diligently to train volunteers as CHWs in its partner communities as part of the Holistic Model. El Escobal will receive training as soon as possible to further support the health of its community members.

Some of the future CHW’s primary responsibilities will include:

  • Promoting healthy practices and maintaining contact with GB staff about their progress
  • Performing First Aid in the case of an emergency
  • Managing the Patient Referral cases of the community
  • Promoting involvement with other GB programs such as Human Rights, Public Health and Microfinance workshops
  • Recording and monitoring members of their respective communities who:
    • Are pregnant
    • Have a chronic disease
    • Are children under five
      years old

MEDICAL/DENTAL VOLUNTEERS IN THE COMMUNITY

Chapter Date Number of Volunteers
N/A N/A N/A

Dental

Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete

DENTAL CARE ACCESS

Global Brigades does not send Medical/Dental Brigades in El Escobal because they do not have a school to host clinics. Community members from El Escobal attend Medical Brigades in the nearby community of El Limón.

Working closely with the Medical Program, the Dental Program provides fillings, extractions, and fluoride treatments as a standard part of medical brigades. Most community members do not have regular access to dental care due to the lack of a dentist within a reasonable distance.

MEDICAL/DENTAL VOLUNTEERS IN THE COMMUNITY

Chapter Date Number of Volunteers
N/A N/A N/A

Water

Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete

EL ESCOBAL’S WATER CHALLENGE

El Escobal has a gravity-fed water system which brings water from a spring in the hills near the community. The system was originally constructed in 1989, so many of the pipes are starting to deteriorate, producing frequent leaks.

Although El Escobal is a very small community, there are 2 separate water committees (7 members each) for the 2 separate sections of the water system– one for upper Escobal and one for lower Escobal. The system for lower Escobal Abajo functions well, but the system for upper Escobal is in serious need of repairs. The houses in upper Escobal do not consistently receive water. There is also a large government construction project of windmills happening in the area, and the deforestation from this project has damaged the watershed for the surrounding communities. It is difficult for them to make demands against the project, however, because the water committees are not legally registered with the Ministry of Health.

-

Volunteers - #

-

Project Beneficiaries - #

-

Kilometers of Pipeline Installed - #

-

Storage Tank Volume (gallons) - #

EL ESCOBAL’S WATER SOLUTION

In March 2020, Global Brigades began working with the community of El Escobal to repair their water system. 

It was determined that the best fit for El Escobal would be: to replace the conduction line and distribution network with new tubes, build an additional catchment tank at the source, and eventually install household connections with water meters.  Upon completion, the repaired system will benefit 30 households, consisting of approximately 100 individuals. There is also the possibility that the GB Legal Empowerment team can help the Water Committees navigate the process of obtaining their “personería jurídica,” or legal registration.

In the interest of sustainability, after the project is complete, the members of the Water Committee will be trained on water treatment and system maintenance, administration, and operation, so they can continue adequately managing the water system. El Escobal will also establish a monthly water fee determined by usage in order to pay the Water Committee for water treatment, maintenance costs, and system sustainability.

WATER VOLUNTEERS IN THE COMMUNITY

Chapter Date Number of Volunteers
N/A N/A N/A

Business

Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete

Global Brigades is working on the implementation of the Holistic Model in El Escobal but has not yet begun with the Business Program. In the planning phase, local staff is working with community members to assess the economic needs of the community, establish a community bank, and identify micro-enterprises that can benefit from on-brigade consultations.

N/A

Volunteers

N/A

Business Consulted

N/A

Savings Accounts Opened

N/A

Loans Administered

BUSINESS VOLUNTEERS IN THE COMMUNITY

Chapter Date Number of Volunteers

Public Health

Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete

Global Brigades is working on the implementation of the Holistic Model in El Escobal but has not yet begun with the Public Health Program. If there is a need, the financing, delivery, and installation of sanitation units will start as soon as feasible.

N/A

Volunteers

N/A

Sanitation Units Installed

N/A

People Benefitted with PH Infrastructure

N/A

Hours of Public Health Educational Workshops

PUBLIC HEALTH VOLUNTEERS IN THE COMMUNITY

Chapter Date Number of Volunteers
N/A N/A N/A

Local Reference Points

View the map to see the closest volunteer lodging facilities, hospitals, and other relevant points of reference.

  • Feature