Nancy Delgadillo Roca, 39 years old, Health Promoter in Camantavishi.
It’s often said that healthcare is a vocation. For Nancy Delgadillo Roca this couldn’t be more true. Nancy manages the health post – or ‘botiquin’ in Spanish, in Camantavishi village, which is part of Cool Earth’s Asháninka partnership in the Peruvian Amazon.
Nancy began her medical training at age 13, and is now passing her knowledge onto the next generation, by training up 19-year-old Diosdith Guzman to be a maternal health promoter for the village. She is hoping that Diosdith will be able to help the community when Nancy has to travel.
Nancy trained as a midwife for three years, and especially enjoys learning about medicinal practices for children. Her biggest success recently has been an education programme which aims to reduce incidents of diarrhoea caused by drinking dirty water. Camantavishi’s water comes from rivers and rain.
Nancy has successfully encouraged the majority of people in the community to boil water before drinking it. Since this practice has been in place, the village has had far fewer cases of diarrhoea. She also has a great remedy for those who do get sick: coconut water from fresh coconuts. It contains natural sugars that replace those lost through diarrhoea, and it’s guaranteed to be clean.
“If you chew the flesh and drink the water of the little coconuts it’ll work better than using a big coconut.”
Nancy’s botiquin is the most successful health post in the area, and one of the best equipped. There is one room for doing blood tests, one for giving vaccinations, one for storing medicines and one for treating pregnant women.
The government gives some money to buy medicines, but it is Cool Earth’s donors who have helped Nancy and her botiquin to make such a huge impact on the health of our village partners.