Author: Salesian Missions

Publication Date: May 10, 2023

From Your Heart to Theirs

In the Dominican Republic, a donation of critical supplies has been improving the health and well-being of hundreds of children and families living in Santo Domingo, Jarabacoa, Hainamosa, La Vega and Santiago. And the items reached their destination thanks to generous support from friends like you.

Provided by Rise Against Hunger and distributed to eight Salesian-run community health clinics, the donation included assorted medicine such as over-the-counter pain relievers, antibiotics and blood pressure drugs—as well as personal hygiene products, baby wash, toothbrushes and even crutches. It also included lab instruments, dental and orthodontal equipment, and supplies for pregnant and nursing mothers.

“Our work in the Dominican Republic extends far beyond education,” says Father Timothy Ploch, interim director of Salesian Missions. “Everywhere our missionaries serve, our goal is to serve the whole person—making sure their basic needs, including health care, are met so that they have the energy, resources and determination to successfully pull themselves out of poverty.”

Many patients who visit the clinics are young mothers and their children who otherwise couldn’t access even the most basic health care.

“This is when the direct human impact of our partnerships is truly apparent,” Fr. Tim says. Cheroly, for example, rests easy in the knowledge that her daughter is protected from common childhood illnesses, thanks to the free vaccines and pediatric consultations she receives at the San Pedro Apostal Dispensary. In a country where more than 30 out of 1,000 children die before reaching the age of five, this care is crucial.

Elderly patients benefit, too. Until she began visiting the clinic, 78-year-old Magaly had to forego the blood pressure medication she needed but couldn’t afford.

“We know that heart disease is the number one cause of death in the Dominican Republic,” Fr. Tim explains. “This is why the free medical care we provide is so important. At the same time that our missionaries work to prevent chronic illnesses through our poverty eradication and health education programs, they can also treat people who need and deserve care. Because of our many kind donors who support our Loaves and Fishes program, patients like Cheroly’s daughter and Magaly have a new lease on life. On their behalf, I’m tremendously grateful.”

Learn more about our work in the Dominican Republic.

Our mission transforms every $1 into $14 worth of life-saving goods to benefit impoverished people around the world. What’s your mission?

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