Punta Gorda, Belize Outreach
Members of Racine Founder’s Rotary Club, along with Racine firefighters, technical college trainers, physical and occupational therapists and a hospital director of medical imaging, traveled to Punta Gorda, Belize, in April, 2023 to provide training and equipment to bolster medical services in the poverty-stricken community on the northeastern coast of Central America.
“As an active club of Rotary International, Racine Founder’s Rotary Club is pleased that we can participate in worldwide opportunities to make a difference,” said Steen Sanderhoff, local Rotarian and district grants committee chair. “Along with the Belize trip, we’ve also actively participated in Ukraine, Kurdistan and Guatemalan projects.”
Rotarian Kevin Cookman explained the scope of the 2023 trip: “We took two Gateway Technical College training specialists, who are American Heart Association-certified in CPR, and two City of Racine firelighters, who trained Punta Gorda firefighters in CPR and various rescue techniques to lay the groundwork for the addition of EMS services for the volunteer fire department.“
“We also took physical and occupational therapists to assist and support a right-out-of-college physical therapy grad to set up therapy services in the Hillside Clinic, as well as provide training for the visiting nurses team from Hillside. They will assist families with disabled members to best navigate daily cares at home.”
“The third project used the expertise from a hospital director of medical imaging who visited the Punta Gorda Hospital and Hillside Clinic to assess current capability and determine what digital X-ray machines they might need,” Rotarian Loretta Baxter said. “Right now, they are on outdated analog equipment that uses the old-style X-ray plates.”