Every summer and winter, CU Peru sends a team of current members to the Loreto region of the Peruvian Amazon. We work with rural villages within the Mazan district that lie along the Napo River, a large tributary of the Amazon River. These rural villages have little access to medical and other services, which are usually many hours away by boat, and one minimally trained volunteer community health worker (CHW).
Our primary goal is to support the CHWs so that they may better serve their communities through enhanced knowledge and triaging. We achieve this by hosting CHW training sessions that follow a curriculum developed by our team in advance. The curriculum focuses primarily on management of fever and malaria, diarrhea, vital signs, danger signs, prevention, obstetrics, development/nutrition, first aid, physical therapy, parasites, skin lesions and oral health. The textbook Donde No Hay Doctor is utilized as a supplemental learning tool. Pre- and post-tests are administered during each training session as a means of assessing the skills and knowledge acquired by CHWs by the end of the training. There is a vast range of knowledge between promoters, but fortunately there is an overall general improvement from pre- to post-test.
While hosting CHW trainings is our primary focus, CU Peru members often work on other projects such as collaborations with DB Peru and Centura Global Health. Ultimately, we strive to fulfill our mission statement through the advocating of health education as a fundamental human right.