Our Latest Visit

May 17, 2019 was the first day of our semiannual trip to Nicaragua. After a full day of travel we arrived in Managua after 1:00 a.m. We planned to board a plane to Puerto Cabezas the next morning, so it was a very short night’s rest. Once settled into our hotel there, we prepared for our first class meeting.

It was with the 6-year students. We met in an open-air room on the 2nd floor of our hotel at 4:30 p.m. Sister Diane mentioned that this might be our last meeting with them because they will likely be continuing with their studies in Managua when we return in December. We’ve known most of them since they began this journey. Now they face their last year and they shared their thoughts with us. It was pretty well agreed that had it been possible, they would have liked to have had more training in radiology. Hopefully such courses will be available in the medical school’s future. For now it is still a relatively new program, celebrating its 10th anniversary, Adelante Mujer having been involved nearly from the beginning. Sister Diane reminded them that, as medical doctors, they will influence the communities they serve. She suggested they use their influence to help direct the future of the medical program. They listened with intense concentration. These women will do more than heal the sick; they will be symbols of hope in general. 

Before we said good-bye, Farlin addressed Sister Diane. The Sisters of St. Agnes had influenced her entire life, she said. Sister Raymond and another Sister were there when she was born. The Sisters were her teachers until she began her medical training when again they were there with financial and moral support. Sadly, the presence of the Sisters in the schools has become a thing of the past. You, the donors now carry on the work of supporting their medical education.

The light was fading and we wanted to get one last photo of the class before it became too dark, indoor lighting being too dim. We said good-bye to these remarkable women with a touch of sadness, extreme pride, and confidence that they will make a huge difference in their communities. They asked us to extend their gratitude to you, the wonderful donors. Without your help, they said, their lives would be quite different, and not for the better.

In Case You’re Wondering

When people donate they usually want to know two things: Is my money going to the cause I want to support and do recipients appreciate what I give?

The reply to the first concern is a definite “Yes, every penny of every donation is used to help young women in Nicaragua who are studying to be medical doctors. Every penny.”

Do the medical students appreciate what I give? Another resounding “Yes!” During every visit to Nicaragua we are thanked for helping students realize their dream to be medical doctors. One student said, “We can’t believe strangers would help us like they do.” A student who is now a doctor explained, “I never could have paid for all I needed to complete my degree. Tell everyone that I am infinitely grateful.”

Sometimes when we are in Nicaragua a student will give a thank you note or a little gift of gratitude to us who represent the program. Sister Ann who founded Adelante Mujer is the one most commonly  honored. One grateful student used her considerable artistic talent to thank for the funding she had received. “I made this for Sister Ann,” she told us. She opened a lovely drawing she offered as a gift. Sister Ann was quite impressed by the likeness it had to her. The gratitude of the students is truly special and so very sincere.

A few years ago one of our beautiful almost-doctors gave me a little envelop to deliver to Sister Ann. She told me it was her First Communion rosary. Needless to say, it was very humbling and quite unbelievable for her to give something so precious. “Are you sure?” I asked. “Don’t you want to save it to give to your daughter for her First Communion?” “No,” she insisted. “I want Sister Ann to have it. I am so thankful to her that she started Adelante Mujer and now I will be a doctor because of all the help from Adelante Mujer.” Thank you, donors, in her name.

Last December one of our doctors said through an interpreter: “Tell Sister Ann that she is going to be a grandma!” She continued, “When I have my baby I will name her after Sister Ann because she helped me so much for all those years I studied.” And sure enough, as of the end of January there is a baby named after the foundress of Adelante Mujer. How grateful is that mother who is now an Adelante Mujer doctor! Her daughter is living evidence of her thanks to all who give to help women medical students in northeastern Nicaragua become medical doctors.

Sister Diane ~ May 2019

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Dr Sayonara


*A note written in September 2017 by Sayonara in her academic year 5. Translated by Google

Hello Sister Ann,

I hope you are well, I am very pleased to greet you. I send greetings and thanks to all of our donors who make it possible for us scholars to continue studying and continue to help needy women. Continue reading “Sayonara”

Why Support Adelante Mujer?

Why choose to support Adelante Mujer when there are so many places in the world where people are displaced from their homes by war; where hunger is common; where basic needs like clean water, health care, and shelter are unavailable? We all have limited resources and want to help others less fortunate. How do we choose when we cannot help everyone?

Continue reading “Why Support Adelante Mujer?”

maternity ward

The Maternity Ward

When we travel to Bilwi, Puerto Cabezas, we regularly visit the local hospital to check on our students and some of our graduates who are now practicing doctors. My first visit was in 2016 and I was shocked to see the conditions (see the Jan. 2017 blog ‘My First Trip: Bilwi, Puerto Cabezas).

Continue reading “The Maternity Ward”

Meet Our New Doctors

These nine remarkable woman graduated from URACCAN University on Feb. 24, 2018. We now have a total of thirty-one doctors who were supported by your donations and are now working as doctors in that region. These doctors received your support, through Adelante Mujer, between one to four years during their studies. All nine have now begun their internships at the local hospital and clinics.

Continue reading “Meet Our New Doctors”