Honduras Veterinary-Public Health Ministry – 2016
Having just returned from the 2016 Veterinary-Public Health Ministry to Honduras, I am incredibly grateful for having been a part of this amazing team and for this opportunity to share my experience with you. I hope I am able to fully convey the extraordinary work being done in Honduras by these caring individuals.
I was fortunate to learn about this trip through my colleagues at Merck Animal Health. With a background in the veterinary industry and international studies, I jumped at the chance to join the team and return to a country I had traveled through once before. I knew the opportunity was a perfect fit. What I learned along the way was transformational.
Upon my arrival to Honduras, I had a general idea about the vaccination and healthcare services provided by the team. What I did not realize, however, was the extent of local involvement and the dedication to education and development. By truly meeting the needs of the community, the ministry has grown over the years to touch the lives of so many people in the area. The local Honduran organizers are incredibly grateful for the support provided by the mission and they welcomed us like we were members of their own family. What I witnessed was a true demonstration of bridging together two countries, two cultures and two peoples. Each individual, no matter their background, was an ambassador reaching out to others in love and caring. It was a privilege to be a part of this effort.
During our brief time in this beautiful country, we vaccinated and treated over 4700 animals and the public health team performed vision testing on more than 200 school age children.
I believe, now more than ever, that extending our hands in kindness and understanding is crucial to healing the wounds in the world today. Each of us can play a role and we all have something to give. These gifts come in many forms. From my personal experience, I have found that sharing my photographs and stories have helped people to discover what they can do to help our brothers and sisters in Honduras.
Thank you for your contribution to make this ministry possible. I am truly grateful for the vaccines donated to this effort by Merck Animal Health and for the contributions of other corporations and sponsorships including: Bayer S.A. Animal Health CR, Colorado Serum Co., Merial Ltd., Elanco Animal Health, Performance Products Co., Vedco, Inc.; and Virbac Corporation, the Lions Club of New Braunfels, and the organizational support of the Episcopal Diocese of West Texas and Café Cohorsil of Siguatepeque, Honduras.
Please know that the progress made this year, with your help, will continue to flourish.