Mesa del Ocote

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

Overview

Mesa del Ocote is located in the mountainous region of central Nicaragua. The community has one primary school with two classrooms and one teacher. There is no secondary school located within the community. Additionally the community’s local health center 5 kilometers away. Most people in the community work as agricultural laborers. Global Brigades has completed a water system in this community. Before the Water program was implemented in Mesa del Ocote, their top three needs expressed were: access to sufficient and potable water, access to latrines suitable during the rainy seasons, and access to concrete floors.

Mesa del Ocote is on the wait-list for continuing the Holistic Model implementation as part of Global Brigades’ strategic plan in Nicaragua.

Municipality: San Rafael del Norte

Department: Jinotega

Homes : 21
Population : 190
Water System : Yes
Community Bank : No
Electricity : Yes
Health Center : Yes
Community Health Workers : Yes
% of Homes with Latrines : 100%
Education : Up to 6th Grade
Distance from Lodging Facility : 1 hr

Medical

Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete

HEALTH CARE ACCESS:

Mesa del Ocote is a community located in the municipality of San Rafael del Norte in the mountainous region of Jinotega. They have a local health center located in 5 kilometers. The local health center has medications supplied occasionally. There is no access to private pharmacies.

Based on Global Brigades Rapid Needs Assessment the top illnesses in children are diarrheal diseases and the flu. For adults, common illnesses are chronic diseases such as diabetes and hypertension, as well as kidney infection. Without access to trained health care professionals and medications, chronic diseases can go unmanaged, leading to further health problems. Acute illnesses can also be severe and affect the quality of life.

*These statistics represent brigades in the community of Los Encuentros de San Gabriel, where community members from Mesa del Ocote attend Medical Brigades.

246

Brigade Volunteers*

4756

Patient Consultations*

22

Pap Smears Performed*

17

Health Education Workshops*

COMMUNITY HEALTH WORKER:

Mesa del Ocote has 3 Community Health Workers (CHWs) that are trained by the Ministry of Health and supported by Global Brigades to monitor the conditions of chronic patients. In this community, Global Brigades is establishing a partnership with the Ministry of Health and is looking forward to providing these CHWs blood pressure cuffs, stethoscopes, glucometers, and first aid kits, to facilitate more impactful work.

BRIGADE INFORMATION:

Medical Brigades in Mesa del Ocote will be in the community church in Los Encuentros de San Gabriel.  This location has one large room and backyard for triage, consultation, dentistry and pharmacy stations. The average amount of patients seen is 231 patients per day.

Mesa del Ocote offers strong support on Medical Brigades from the community volunteers. One way community volunteers assist is by running intake. Intake is the very first station of the clinic and is where the community volunteers write down the patient’s name, date of birth, community, and identification number. Additionally, community volunteers manage clinic organization. They set up tables and chairs in the clinic prior to the brigade’s arrival as well as direct patients to the next medical station, once the clinic has opened for the day. Lastly, community volunteers lead adult health education sessions on sanitation and hygiene, chronic diseases, contraception, women’s health, and water purification. Mesa del Ocote community volunteers are essential for the efficiency and effectiveness of Medical Brigades.

AVERAGE PATIENTS ATTENDED PER DAY: 231

NEARBY COMMUNITIES: TOMATOYA, SASLE, LAS CURENAS, SARAGUASCA, CHAGUITE GRANDE, MESA DEL OCTE, SAN GABRIEL

BRIGADE SITE: COMMUNITY CHURCH

MEDICAL BRIGADES IN THE COMMUNITY:

Chapter Date # Of Volunteers Chapter Date # Of Volunteers
CUNY Queens College January 2013 23 Vanderbilt University March 2013 38
Pennsylvania State March 2014 35 Marquette University January 2015 35
Rice University March 2015 35 University of Miami January 2016 33
Oklahoma State May 2016 47

Dental

Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete

DENTAL CARE ACCESS:

In 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 dentists within a reasonable distance.

*These statistics represent brigades in the community of Los Encuentros de San Gabriel, where community members from Mesa del Ocote attend Dental Brigades.

141

Patients Consultations*

298

Flouride Treatments *

38

Fillings Performed*

12

Dental Education Workshops*

BRIGADE INFORMATION:

Dental Brigades use the community church in Los Encuentros de San Gabriel as their brigade site. The community church is suitable for brigades and running mobile clinics. Dental Brigades use space in the large one room of the community church. Dentists spend an average of 12 minutes with each patient and we are able to provide 4-5 educational workshops a day. Each brigade sees an average of 24 patients per day.

Mesa del Ocote offers strong support on Dental Brigades from the community volunteers. One way the community volunteers, assist is by running intake. Intake is the very first station of the clinic and is where the community volunteers write down the patient’s name, date of birth, community, and identification number. Additionally, community volunteers manage clinic organization. They set up tables and chairs in the clinic prior to the brigade’s arrival as well as direct patients to the next medical station, once the clinic has opened for the day. Lastly, community volunteers lead adult health education sessions on oral health and hygiene. Mesa del Ocote’s community volunteers are essential for the efficiency and effectiveness of Dental Brigades.

AVERAGE PATIENTS ATTENDED: 24

NEARBY COMMUNITIES: TOMATOYA, SASLE, LAS CURENAS, SARAGUASCA, CHAGUITE GRANDE, MESA DEL OCTE, SAN GABRIEL

BRIGADE SITE: COMMUNITY CHURCH

DENTAL BRIGADES IN THE COMMUNITY:

Chapter Date # Of Volunteers Chapter Date # Of Volunteers
CUNY Queens College January 2013 23 Vanderbilt University March 2013 38
Pennsylvania State March 2014 35 Marquette University January 2015 35
Rice University March 2015 35 University of Miami January 2016 33
Oklahoma State May 2016 47

Water

Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete
Jesus Maria Tinoco Pineda, donor of land for water system’s fresh water source

MESA DEL OCOTE WATER CHALLENGE:

Previously, one of the only water sources in the community was a river contaminated with waste and agricultural chemicals 2 kilometers away. In the 1990’s the Municipality of San Rafael del Norte identified a mountain spring water source of good quality and quantity to build a water system off of. At the time there were no issues breaking ground on the project since the land had been fully donated by the landowner, Jesus Maria Tinoco Pineda, to the Municipality because Pineda knew the water needs that communities in the surrounding area had. Despite this promising beginning, lack of financing and a budget from the Municipality led to the project’s halt for almost 20 years.

846

Water Brigade Volunteers

2500

Meters of Piping Installed

100

%

Percentage of System Completed

91

Project Beneficiaries

WATER SOLUTION: 

It was not until this past September 2016 that the project officially re-started after a partnership was formed between Mesa del Ocote and 4 other communities, Global Brigades Nicaragua, the Municipality of San Rafael del Norte, and Water for People. In order to plan a water system custom-designed for the 5 communities, the land was first surveyed by the Municipality of San Rafael del Norte. From this land survey, it was determined that the best fit would be to take water from an available spring source. Households would then be connected to a gravity system with one storage tank of 5,500 cubic meter capacity. A concrete water catchment was constructed to collect water from the spring mountain source. From there nine kilometers of trenches were dug with pipeline laid. The system was designed to then conduct water by gravity to the storage tank, where it would be held and treated, before flowing through sixteen kilometers of distribution pipeline to every community member’s household. This new water flow will supply the communities of Sabana de en Medio, La Joya, Cuatro Esquinas, Mesa del Ocote and San Gabriel through the projected 20-year lifespan of the project.

In addition to construction, Mesa del Ocote mobilized to form a CAPS (Comité de Agua Potable y Sanitación/ Water and Sanitation Committee). Over the course of eight months of construction, 816 Global Brigades volunteers worked alongside the committee and community members to construct a system that now reaches 221 families and 921 beneficiaries.  Before the project’s completion, a capacity test of the well was completed, and demonstrated an average of 46 gallons per minute.

WATER BRIGADES IN THE COMMUNITY:

Chapter Date # Of Volunteers Chapter Date # Of Volunteers
DePaul University November 2016 37 DePaul University December 2016 23
University of California Los Angeles December 2016 21 Oakland University December 2016 31
University of Miami December 2016 34 University of Wisconsin/ Ball State University January 2017 24
University of Southern California January 2017 24 University of Southern California January 2017 14
Virgina Tech January 2017 38 Carroll University January 2017 25
Wellesley College/CEGEP Champlain St. Lawrence January 2017 31 Chicago Brigade/ Texas State University January 2017 30
University of Virginia January 2017 22 Governors State University January 2017 19
University of Dayton January 2017 65 SUNY Binghamton University January 2017 40
University of Wisconsin January 2017 32 Saint Louis University January 2017 30
University of Texas-Austin January 2017 30 Texas A&M January 2017 41
Albion University January 2017 26 Southern Connecticut State University January 2017 13
Marquette University January 2017 84 University of Missouri January 2017 34
Kutztown University/ Caldwell University January 2017 39 Columbia University/ Texas A&M January 2017 22
Smith College January 2017 23 Milwaukee School of Engineering February 2017 24
Milwaukee School of Engineering February 2017 12 Milwaukee School of Engineering February 2017 21
Raleigh NC March 2017 18 West Virgina University March 2017 26
Michigan State University March 2017 45 University of North Carolina-Charlotte March 2017 31
College of William and Mary March 2017 35 West Virginia University March 2017 15
Central Michigan University/ Pennsylvania State University March 2017 26 Central Michigan University March 2017 43
Carnegie Mellon University March 2017 24 University of Notre Dame March 2017 30
Carnegie Mellon University/ University of Arizona March 2017 18 New York University/ Indiana University March 2017 42
Carnegie Mellon University March 2017 15 Rutgers University March 2017 33
UNC Chapel Hill March 2017 28 New Jersey Institute of Technology March 2017 22
Rutgers University/ Indiana University March 2017 16 Marquette University March 2017 28
Indiana University/ University of Arizona March 2017 19 University of Maryland Baltimore March 2017 59
Cal Ply Pomona March 2017 26 University of Arkansas March 2017 23
University of Denver March 2017 38 University of Maryland Baltimore March 2017 10
Northwestern University/ University of Maryland Baltimore March 2017 18 RWTH Aachen University March 2017 16

Business

Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete

MESA DEL OCOTE BUSINESS CHALLENGE:

The majority of Mesa del Ocote’s residents are smallholder farmers, working primarily with horticulture, livestock, dairy, and poultry. The dependence on the agricultural sector leaves community members livelihoods vulnerable to variables like weather and disease. Additionally, there are significant physical and institutional barriers that limit access to financial services and representation in local markets.

15

Savings Accounts Opened

MESA DEL OCOTE’S MICROFINANCE SOLUTION:

The Business Program works to stimulate the local economy by organizing community volunteers around a community bank, which is entirely owned and operated by its members. Focusing on providing access to credit and savings for their fellow community members, its Bank Council members are tasked with socializing the community bank and managing the funds. The Business Program provides training and support to help strengthen these community banks and stimulate the flow of capital within the community. These financial services are especially beneficial for subsistence farmers, who can invest more heavily in their production with a loan, pay back the loan after the harvest, and generate an income with any excess.

Mesa del Ocote’s community bank, Milagro de Dios (God’s Miracle), was established in September 2017 with the support of Global Brigades. The community bank has 15 shareholders who meet in the home of the Community Bank Secretary, and a 3-person Bank Council that manages the shareholders and their funds. In order to pool funds together, increase the capital available to the community bank, and expand the impact of its financial services, each member contributes a monthly share or fee for which they receive a proportional amount of the bank’s dividends at the end of its fiscal year.

Global Brigades and Mesa del Ocote’s community bank are working towards being able to disburse loans and train individuals on loan management and financial literacy.

 

MESA DEL OCOTE’S BUSINESS SOLUTION:

In addition to working with the community bank, the Business Program provides technical support and consultations to support local entrepreneurs and microenterprises. The goal is to foster the development of efficient and practical business actions, grow enterprise assets, and create local employment opportunities. During this process, interested community members receive training to increase their familiarity with business terminology, develop their business administration skills, and promote innovation and diversification in the types of business ventures they pursue.

The Business Program is preparing to introduce Business Brigades in Mesa del Ocote to study the local market and work with existing microenterprises to create the best plan forward in the community’s economic development.

 

Public Health

Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete

MESA DEL OCOTE PUBLIC HEALTH CHALLENGE:

The community faces numerous public health challenges with limited infrastructure in their homes. Only 10% of homes have concrete floors as opposed to mud or dirt floors. Furthermore, 0% of homes have access to showers. 90%  of homes have traditional stoves, which means that the majority of homes have an over accumulation of smoke. Although 100% of homes have latrines, the community does not have sufficient methods of waste disposal and many latrines are in disrepair. The river, where people bathe, is contaminated with waste and chemicals. Mesa del Ocote is on the wait-list to partner with Global Brigades Public Health projects.

235

Number of brigaders

23

Sanitary units constructed

MESA DEL OCOTE PUBLIC HEALTH SOLUTION:

The Public Health Program is now complete in Mesa del Ocote with all the phases of the project being done.

PUBLIC HEALTH BRIGADES IN THE COMMUNITY:

Chapter Date # Of Volunteers Chapter Date # Of Volunteers
Virginia Commonwealth University January 2018 21 Rutgers University January 2018 31
Governors State University January 2018 22 Boston University January 2018 15
Carroll University January 2018 21 Intercollegiate Medical Brigades of Montreal January 2018 6
University of Missouri January 2018 11 Saint Louis University January 2018 51
Wellesley College January 2018 15 State University of New York – Buffalo March 2018 16

Local Reference Points

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

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