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This mission trip from July 2nd-10th 2009, was HMO’s first to the region, but for some volunteers it was their fourth visit to the area.



Bahia Negra, Paraguay




The small military town of Bahia Negra has a population of approximately 800 people. The military base is responsible for the safety of the Paraguay River. It is a 30-minute walk from Port Diana.


Bahia Negra is somewhat different from Port Diana, since it has electricity and modern conveniences.


However, this town also requires a great deal of assistance. Local residents earn less than $100 U.S. per month. Their lifestyle is very modest and many cannot afford regular clothing, toothbrushes, toothpaste and soap. They also face the same health care dilemma as the residents of Port Diana, since there is only one doctor in 450 kilometers.


There is a local military hospital, but it has no budget, staff or equipment. In fact, the front foyer sank long ago due to a poor foundation, and has been vacant for many years. The most frequent visitors are mosquitoes, flies and other insects.


The local road is made of mud and clay. Although it is safe to travel in the winter due to low amounts of rainfall, in the summer season the mud often barricades the town from the outside world.


HMO’s volunteers did their best to provide health care to the residents of Bahia Negra and its military personnel. In return, the commander graciously assigned two soldiers to protect us while visiting Port Diana. He also granted us permission to dock at the base during nightfall for added protection.



Thank you letter from the Mayor




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