HANDS FOR HEALTH
With ALEXANDRA GAMBOA
HANDS FOR HEALTH
Alexandra María Gamboa Corrales, 27-year-old doctor, graduated from the Universidad Iberoamericana (UNIBE) in 2018. She has dedicated herself to deepen on the Ngäbe-Buglé indigenous culture living for a year in the Indigenous Territory La Casona, with the communities where she has carried out different projects of sexual and reproductive health with emphasis on gender equity. One of her most outstanding jobs was working in the project of the Costa Rican Social Security Fund (CCSS) as part of Hands for Health, during the process of creating an open Alexandra was the link between the community and the health center. She worked with community health entities, such as midwives and natural doctors, training them in childbirth care with emphasis on risk factors and warning signs. She worked with CCSS health personnel to raise awareness of the Ngäbe-Buglé culture.
Together with the organization Floating Doctors, in Bocas del Toro, Panama, she worked with different communities to create a community empowerment project. She created community organization in order to identify problems and design integral health projects.
NEW HEALTH APPROACHES
ABOUT THE Organisation
The Hands for Health Association is a non-governmental, non-profit organization that seeks to improve the quality of life of vulnerable populations in Costa Rica, with special emphasis on the indigenous population, focusing on integral health. This objective is achieved through the development of various projects that solve and benefit the target groups in the area where it is executed.
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ABOUT THE PROJECT
"Casa Materna" Project
The project consists of the construction of a communal space, managed, built and sustained in coordination with the community, local government, public and private institutions. This physical space, called the Casa Materna, will be managed by the indigenous midwives of the community, who will provide lodging for pregnant women and any companions they choose (children, partners, other family members) in a warm environment, similar to that of their homes, incorporating their dietary and cultural practices. It also offers a space for education in the promotion of healthy practices and behaviors related to maternal and neonatal health. This maternity home does not attend births, but cares for and prepares pregnant women for childbirth, allowing access to health services and ensuring an institutional delivery. In addition, it offers a place where the mother and the newborn together with their families stay during the puerperium until they are able to return to their homes according to the individual needs of the families.