Sunday, March 4, 2012

Wamena & Klinik Kalvary

Greetings from Wamena. 

I know it has been a long time since my last entry but this next two weeks I hope to share with everything that I've been doing for this project.

Currently I am in Wamena, a not-so-small-town in the mountainous region of Papua, Jayawijaya district.  This town is the epicenter for HIV/AIDS in the region with almost 2000 people infected and it will be my homebase for the next 1-2 months.  I hope to visit surrounding towns in the area including Tolikara and Puncak Jaya.  Recently, these two places are notorious for deadly conflicts between opposing tribes and I am waiting for things to settle down. 

I visited Wamena in 2009 and a lot of things have changed.  The town is much crowded in people and vehicles.  Many people from outside of Papua or "Orang Pendatang" have settled here.  More money is pouring into the region but unfortunately indigenous Papuans are still at the bottom of the economic ladder.  The majority of the indigenous Papuans make a living as a farmer, selling their crops at the local market earning the bare minimum while most stores and various businesses are owned by non-Papuans.

Currently, I am working with 3 organizations and I would like to highlight one of them, Klinik Kalvary.  Opened in 2006, Klinik Kalvary had been providing excellent care to mostly indigenous Papuans.  Their main focuses are Tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS, and STD.  Many indigenous Papuans prefer to go to here than the Puskesmas (Public Health Center) or Hospital.  The klinik offers free VCT for HIV/AIDS and ART (Anti- Retroviral Therapy) and they've helped hundreds of patients.

Perhaps the biggest challenge here is the lack of transportation which inhibits information and access to care for those living in surrounding villages.  The cost of gas is about $5/liter or $20/gallon.  Klinik Kalvary doesn't have their own vehicle and they rely on foreign donors to help with their expenses.   Nevertheless, the staffs use their own money to visit a kampung or village to share information on HIV/AIDS once a month.      

Nurse Febe reads a patient's profile in the beginning of her shift

Nurse Febe counsels a housewife with TB.

A nurse explains the proper medicine dosage to a patient. 

Rapid Test Results for HIV/AIDS.  3 people were found positive on this day.

Pendeta (pastor) Leo waits for patients inside the prayer room.  He prays for every patient that visits the klinik. 

Klinik Kalvary Staffs

Chatting with my new friends.

1 comment:

  1. great post. I have been sharing your work with my students at Sac High. Keep them coming. Wendi