Asociación Westmont Bethel
Westmont Bethel is an organization that aims to provide health and education to vulnerable groups in society. We work in the health sector providing medical care for recovery of mental and physical health at affordable prices. In education, we want to provide better access to education for vulnerable children through extracurricular educational programs so that they can improve their opportunities in the medium and long term.
Serve people in need.
To be a group of people who are willing to give their time and resources to mainly bring education and health to people who need it, as well as clothing and food to our neighbor, focusing on widows and orphans, in the love of God.
We appropriately channel the distribution of medicines that we receive through Direct Relief (California) for patients in need. Often medications for diabetic patients, hypertensive patients, pregnant women, treatment for acute infections, among others.
- Health Service:
The Westmont Bethel Association provides health services through the facilities of the Westmont Hospital, located in San Miguel Petapa Guatemala. The purpose is to provide medical care of excellence to previous accessible to all. We have external consultation, laboratory services, diagnostic imaging, surgeries, paediatrics, maternity, among others.
- Medical days:
When needed, bring health services at very affordable prices to different communities in rural areas where health services are difficult to access and it is not easy to obtain certain medications.
Extracurricular program for orphaned children, located in San Miguel Petapa, where they can study in a safe environment, with internet access and educational materials, and also receive snacks to perform better in their studies.
Scholarship support for the children of some young people from Uspantán, El Quiché so that they can finish their basic studies and improve their life opportunities.
- Educational program:
Specifically for children who live in poverty in San Miguel Petapa and do not have access to education. The aim is to provide long-term follow-up to these children so that they can finish primary and secondary school as well as a technical school that later allows them to opt for better opportunities to slowly get out of poverty.
"A quality education grants us the ability to fight the war on ignorant and poverty." -Charles Rangel
When the Association was formed in 1997, it was created with the goal of reaching the indigenous people of Uspantán, El Quiché. The objective at that time was to bring food, clothing, medicine and medical evaluation to Quiche Mayan people, based on direct observation of how these people suffered consequences of the internal armed conflict and were not reached by the State.
In addition, based on the Bible, the founders decided to take the Gospel of Jesus from house to house, there they realized the basic needs that people had and that is why they decided to start the WB Association together with American friends.
Religion pure and without blemish before God the Father is this: Visit orphans and widows in their tribulations and keep oneself unspotted from the world. James 1:27; Is it not that you break your bread with the hungry, and to the poor wandering shelters at home, that when you see the naked, cover him, and do not hide from your brother? Then your light will be born like the dawn, and your salvation will soon be seen; and your righteousness will go before you, and the glory of the Lord will be your rear guard. Isaiah 58:7-8
For many years, the WB Association continued to bring this type of help to these low-income people and, in addition, many children from schools in the Uspantán communities were supported with school supplies for years. Later, one of the edges of the Association project was the one that had the most growth, giving itself the opportunity to start with social help through Medical Clinics in the Department of Guatemala, in the municipality of San Miguel Petapa.
Currently, through Westmont Hospital, it has been possible to reach many low-income people who seek medical help at affordable prices and probably cannot afford another private health service. The WB Association continues to work for orphans and widows, as it has since its inception, now in San Miguel Petapa. Currently the goal is to focus on providing food, education and clothing to a group of orphaned children, following up on their physical, mental and spiritual growth.
The number of people reached in Uspantán: widows, orphans, low-income families and vulnerable people is difficult to establish, since there is no exact record of them. Usually every year since 2000, school supplies were provided to more than 500 children from communities in Chaj, El Desengaño, La Ciénaga, Xepequen, among others.
The group of widows that has been helped uninterruptedly since the 90s (in Uspantán) is approximately 20 widows. At the Westmont Hospital in San Miguel Petapa, more than 10,000 people a year have been treated, of which approximately 40% have benefited from discounts on laboratory services, medical consultation, ultrasounds, among others.
Around 3 to 5 free surgeries have been provided per year since 1997. Free medicines are distributed to around 4,000 people per year, not only in the Hospital, but also in medical sessions that continue to be held in the interior of the country. The group of orphaned children that is accompanied at this time is 14 children, who have been followed up for 3 years, mainly in the educational area.
Currently we measure the impact in the health area according to the number of patients who visit us repeatedly and the money that is invested in social assistance each month. These data are collected through internal statistical programs.
The cases of social assistance of the sanatorium are strictly documented, people fill out the social work form and, depending on their socioeconomic status, they are authorized a discount percentage that can be from 20% to the total of the free medical service bill.
In the area of education, we are measuring impact according to the growth of the children who are currently part of the program, their progress in reading and writing, as well as constant evaluations by psychology. Growth indicators in this area are more difficult to see because it is a program planned for the long term, which can have results up to the third or fifth year of accompanying vulnerable children.
Size and/or structure
The Westmont Bethel Association has grown mainly through one of its edges, which is the health project, through the Westmont Hospital in San Miguel Petapa, which began as Medical Clinics and is now a sanatorium that has 4 floors for care to hospitalized and outpatient patients, surgical rooms and diagnostic services.
Also in the internal structure, the Association has grown since it began, counting on the support of many collaborators or responsibility groups, mainly Americans, who have joined the project for years.
We have mainly grown in the health services we offers, as mentioned above. In its beginnings, the Association focused on bringing medical help from home to home to people with limited resources, currently we have a hospital center that offers services of medical specialties (Gynecology, Pediatrics, Surgery, Laboratories, Nutrition, Ultrasound, among others).
In the area of Education, in the case of the group of children currently supported, efforts have been made to monitor the psychological growth of each one of them in the medium term, as well as the fulfillment of assigned competencies for each grade of the school they are attending. This is achieved through a group of professionals (psychologists and teachers) who continuously monitor the children.
As mentioned, we started in Uspantán, El Quiché, and we currently have our facilities in San Miguel Petapa.
The target population has not changed much, the vision has always been to serve the orphan, the widow, people living in extreme poverty. We continue to support orphans, especially this small group of children who have been presented to us in an unusual way. We maintain that people in need are closer than we think.
In the health area, our objective is middle or lower class people who need to recover their health but who find it difficult to access the public health system and it is impossible for them to pay for a private health service. To these people we seek to provide excellent medical care in a family environment at very affordable prices.
Since the beginning, the WB Association has been supported by private donations from friends and volunteers, mainly Americans, who trust in the work of those involved in the association's projects in Guatemala. In recent years, due to the growth of the hospital, we have achieved more income from the sale of medical services, which allows us to offer discounts and exempt medical bills from other people who cannot pay, according to the evaluation mentioned by social work.
Provide didactic material, constancy in educational tutorials and nutritional snacks every day of the year, so that children level their skills and competencies according to the grade in which they attend.
Provide constant quality educational tutorials so that children reach the same level as their peers who live in other socioeconomic conditions.
Achieve leveling the skills of children in the educational area, in addition to maintaining psychological support that allows them to work with their traumas from an early age.
Increase the social assistance provided by Westmont Hospital by 20 to 35% compared to the assistance provided the previous year.
Continue providing medical services of excellence, properly identifying people who really need medical care and who find it difficult to access health services.
Provide very pleasant medical care with human warmth, to all patients who come to the hospital, respecting the dignity of the external person (the patient) and the collaborators who are part of the team.
Create an exclusive physical area (classroom/safe home) where there are technological tools, play areas, a dining area and spaces for personal hygiene, with decent conditions, that allow children to eat, study, learn by playing and reach a competitive academic level and thus change the way they relate to their environment.
Continue providing quality academic and psychological support to the children of the project, through professionals dedicated to children with knowledge in psychopedagogy, psychology, among others. In addition, maintain a stable program of workshops where technical education is provided so that the children and young people mentioned can change their conditions of poverty in the long term, allowing them to function in a competitive work environment.
Only through education can poverty be changed at its root. We believe in the longitudinal monitoring of a small group of people who can change their way of seeing life, providing them with tools that allow them to be productive for society.
Expand the portfolio of specialists and diagnostic medical services, being the first option for health services in the sector. Continue and improve the program of Medical Days in the interior of the country (Cobán, Uspantán and other places near San Miguel Petapa) bringing medical services and medicines to people with limited resources.
Characterize ourselves by always providing quality medical care regardless of the socioeconomic status or race of the people.
Change people's lives by improving their mental and physical health.