2020 was a very difficult year, but despite the challenges Mano a Mano continued with our mission of creating partnerships with impoverished Bolivian communities to improve health and increase economic well-being. Over the next few weeks we will be sharing reports on each of our major programs and its work last year.

Mano a Mano Bolivia Health and Education Programs in 2020

Our counterpart organization Mano a Mano Bolivia focuses on health and education, and despite the challenges of 2020, they completed 2 new schools and 4 health clinics; distributed medical supplies & equipment for COVID-19 support and basic health care; and provided continuing health education and educational materials (often virtually). Mano a Mano’s network of 173 clinics had 896,346 patient visits in 2020.

Patient Visits in Mano a Mano’s Network of 173 Clinics

Disinfecting protocol at the San Jacinto – Icla clinic.

As a part of the Bolivian health care system, Mano a Mano’s network of clinics provide monthly reports to the Bolivian Ministry of Health. Our clinic program’s approach is that health outcomes can be dramatically improved with simple yet effective interventions, beginning with the basic ability to consistently access quality services in their own communities. While COVID-19 has been (rightfully) the dominant current health issue, primary health care is needed now more than ever; our network of clinics serve a vital role in providing access to primary health care for communities in rural Bolivia.

Mano a Mano’s network of clinics had 896,346 patient visits in 2020 (165 clinics reporting).

Omereque Hospital staff making a house visit.

4 New Clinics Built

In 2020, Mano a Mano Bolivia completed 4 new health clinics that provide improved access to quality health care for 6,151 people.

Mano a Mano’s Partnership Model

Every Mano a Mano project is a partnership, with many people working together – thanks to the local communities; municipal governments; donors and volunteers in the US, Bolivia, and other countries; and our counterpart organization Mano a Mano Bolivia that oversees and manages these health and education projects!

Every medical professional in Mano a Mano’s network of clinics is funded by sources in Bolivia.

Continuing Health Education

A critical component of Mano a Mano’s health program in Bolivia is to provide health education:

  • to communities through weekend health clinics providing basic services
  • to Mano a Mano’s clinic staff through continuing health education workshops
  • to medical professionals from other organizations

These programs are managed and administered by Mano a Mano Bolivia, and serve a complementary role to the construction of community clinics throughout rural Bolivia. Although workshops were limited in 2020 due to quarantine and distancing protocols, Mano a Mano Bolivia hosted 9 health education workshops for 727 attendees.

Virtual presentation from Mayo Clinic on COVID-19, as part of one of the Continuing Health Education workshops that took place on March 11-13, 2020 (before restrictions were put into place in Bolivia).

2 New Schools Built

Mano a Mano Bolivia completed a new school in Litoral, Bolivia in 2020.

Mano a Mano Bolivia completed 2 new schools in 2020, despite the many delays and challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Fondo Sonar (Dream Fund)

Mano a Mano Bolivia provides scholarships and support to young adults in Bolivia so that they can pursue their educational/technical interests. 10 students were enrolled in the program in 2020.

Distributing Medical Supplies & Equipment

In addition to near-daily donations of medical supplies and equipment made by our counterpart organization Mano a Mano Internacional, Mano a Mano Bolivia made dozens of distributions in 2020. These supplies are always in high demand, but have taken on added priority and importance because of COVID-19.

Mano a Mano Bolivia has distributed PPE, medical supplies, and equipment to dozens of health care organizations

Mano a Mano Bolivia made 661 distributions in 2020; recipients of medical supply donations include:

  • 46 2nd & 3rd Level hospitals
  • 51 public health clinics
  • 326 Mano a Mano clinics
  • 197 donations to individuals in need
  • 41 to various other organizations (such as jails, police & firefighter units, and long-term care facilities)

Supplies sent from Mano a Mano International in St. Paul go to our counterpart Mano a Mano Internacional in Cochabamba, which are then distributed by Mano a Mano Internacional to organizations throughout Bolivia. Here our counterpart organization Mano a Mano Bolivia is picking up a truckload of medical supplies and equipment from Mano a Mano Internacional in October 2020, for distribution to Mano a Mano’s network of clinics and other organizations that Mano a Mano Bolivia partners with.

Thank You Mano a Mano Bolivia

This post is a non-exhaustive update on what our counterpart organization Mano a Mano Bolivia was able to accomplish in 2020. We are very grateful for the hard work and dedication of our staff and volunteers – and the communities, municipalities, and donors we partner with – that work together to make this possible, even in trying times.

Mano a Mano Bolivia staff and community leaders celebrating the dedication of the new school in Qhapajtala, Bolivia.