Monte Rico

  • Overview
  • Medical
  • Dental
  • Business


Monte Rico is located in the biodiverse region of East Panama and Global Brigades began working with community members in March 2021. Community members have access to credit through an established and thriving community bank which will support continued investment in local businesses and home improvement projects for families within the community. People in Monte Rico are primarily dedicated to agriculture and the sale of artisanal crafts.

Corregimiento: Rio Congo
District: Darien

Homes : 17
Population : 50
Water System : No
Community Bank : Yes
Electricity : Yes
Health Center : Yes
Community Health Workers : No
Homes with Latrines : 35%
Education in the Community : Up to 6th grade
Distance from Lodging Facility : 32 km


Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete


Monte Rico currently does not have access to a health post in their community and community members need to travel long distances to reach the nearest one which most of the time is understaffed and lacks medicines. The trip by bus can take various hours and visitors to the health center can expect long wait times given the limited staff and resources to meet the demand from all neighboring communities.


Brigade Volunteers


Medical Patient Consultations


Adult Health Education Workshops (Approx.)


Children Education Workshops (Approx.)


GB Panama’s Medical Dental team started the Agentes Comunitarios en Salud or ACeS program in 2016. “Agentes” from 10 communities in East Panama and Darien were Panama’s first community health workers. Monte Rico does not have any Community Health Workers trained at the moment.

Some of CHW’s primary responsibilities 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.


Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete


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 dentist within a reasonable distance.


Dental Patient Consultations


Fluoride Treatments


Fillings Performed


Dental Education Workshops


Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete


Community members in Monte Rico lack access to financial resources within the community. The majority of community members do not have bank accounts and there are only limited informal forms of credit available.  For example, a person could obtain ‘credit’ at a local store by buying something now and paying later, simply adding it to their ‘tab,’ but there would be no formalized credit transaction.  Larger financial institutions do not approve loans to community members without a fixed income, making it difficult for local micro-enterprises to grow and thrive. Most community members cite the distance to the nearest bank as the main discouragement to having a personal savings account. Even if individuals wish to travel the distance, not all community members can become members of these financial institutions–cooperatives require monthly membership fees, savings accounts often require a fixed income, and the cost of travel provides an additional barrier.


Brigade Volunteers


Loans Administered


Capital Investment


Saving Accounts Opened


The Global Brigades Business and Microfinance Team trained a new Community Bank in Monte Rico in March 2021. This encouraged the opening of more savings accounts, growth of seed capital, and upon the completion of six months of executive board training, the Community Bank began giving out loans to bank members to spur economic growth and home improvement projects.

Local Reference Points

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

  • Feature