UMaine Students Heading to Guatemala

Joy Hollowell

Updated 2 years ago

In May, a group of students from the University of Maine will deliver medical supplies to clinics in Guatemala. Their mission is not just helping the third world country, but saving our planet at the same time.Joy Hollowell explains.====Organizing medical supplies is a monthly mission for a group of University of Maine students. The Orono school is the only college chapter of Partners for World Health.”Partners for World Health is an organization that was created in 2009 by a nurse, Elizabeth McClellan down in Southern Maine,” explains Alexandra Pastri, co-founder and co-president of Partners for World Health, UMaine chapter.Elizabeth McClellan saw her hospital and others throwing out unused medical supplies due to government regulations. She convinced them to donate the perfectly good materials to Partners for World Health instead.”We collect the medical supplies, we re-organize them and then we supply 3rd world nations or developing nations with such supplies,” says Pastri, who is a senior majoring in nursing at the Orono university.The equipment is stored at a warehouse in Scarborough. “I was really drawn to this organization because of the environmental impacts it has,” says Eleanor D’urso, co-founder and co-president of Partners for World Health, UMaine chapter. “Because we’re taking away all these medical supplies that are landfill-bound, instead of putting them in landfills, they’re getting re-used and for better purposes.”Currently, all of the donated provisions come from medical facilities in Southern Maine. The UMaine chapter is working with hospitals locally to try and initiate the recycling program.In May, 12 students will each bring a bag of medical supplies to clinics in Guatemala.”We’ve been learning about the area of Guatemala, learning about what medical conditions are most critical and most common in the area, we’re also really excited to be working in an orphanage down there,” says Pastri.”It will be nice to see our hard work pay off,” adds Kristina Jamo, a chapter member and kinesiology major at the University of Maine.====The UMaine chapter of Partners for World Health will spend two weeks in Guatemala.On April 20th, the group will have an outdoor yard sale on campus to help raise money for their upcoming trip.And on April 28th, they will host a 5K run.For more information including how to donate, you can check out their Facebook page, Partners for World Health dash Umaine.You can also send checks to The University of Maine ATT: Andrea Gifford, Division of Student Affairs 5748 Memorial Union Orono, ME 04469-5748


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