Letter: The Grand County – Malingua Pamba connection
March 24, 2015
To the Editor:
Perhaps you are one of the lucky ones who is reading this without any "visual aids," which has not been my case since second grade. I have taken for granted my ability to get regular vision checks and the related upgrades for my contact lenses.
However, Amy Miller mentioned to me about a year ago that we should try to organize a Vision Clinic for what has become our "second family" in the southern extension of the Rocky Mountains, which they call the Andes.
Amy and daughter Paige volunteered, the first time, in Malingua Pamba, Ecuador, back in 2012. Their emphasis was engaging the kids in educational activities which, as you know, can be significantly stifled by the lack of sight. We had the great fortune to learn about and connect with the Colorado Chapter of VOSH (Volunteer Optometric Services to Humanity) in early 2013. They agreed to organize a Vision Clinic in mid-April, 2015.
Amy has been working her networking skills and Grand County has responded with open arms. Dr. Marquardt has donated used glasses as has the Lion's Club. Lea & John Ehlen and Lindsay Andrews will be part of the cadre of translators for the 12 VOSH doctors and assistants. We have been so impressed by the volunteer spirit of the citizens of Grand County.
So while I am praising the VOSH volunteers I would like to also acknowledge another member of Centro Educativo La Minga Inc.'s Board of Directors, Jenny Beltman, and her networking skills. Thank you to Mara Pacyga and the fund raiser that Elevates Pilates coordinated along with Margaret Strom in the summer of 2013. Many of the Grand County attendees at that event continue to make annual tax-deductible contributions to support our efforts in education. And a huge "shout out" goes to all four of the Rotary Clubs (Winter Park-Fraser Valley, Granby, Grand Lake and Kremmling) for their continued support mainly for water projects, i.e. Potable and Irrigation Projects as designed and coordinated by Engineers Without Borders with our champion Rotarian Eden Recor.
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To see video/pictures of our volunteers as well as our many projects please visit http://www.escuelaminga.org and/or our Facebook page under Centro Educativo La Minga, Inc.