Thursday, March 15, 2012

So What Have We Been Up to Lately?


Our first baby born in Casa Compasiva. Little Lila just turned one year old last week!
I know...I know...it has been awhile since I've posted! Where to begin?



In February, besides celebrating our anniversary, Casa Compasiva sent a delegation to San Miguel de Allende in Guanajuato state to visit the only nationally accredited midwifery training school in Mexico. We had a good visit, gathered lots of invaluable information (and got sick),and came home to Oaxaca convinced that we are on the right track in the direction that we are going as an organization. While our outfit is not now, and never will be, as vast and all-encompassing as that of San Miguel, nevertheless we know who we are and what we are about. We have a very specific God-given focus and reason for being-- using the tool of midwifery to reach families with the love of Christ. Our trip served to confirm and clarify that vision.



We have also been hard at work developing our Traditional Birth Attendant training program for our Casa Compasiva staff who are now advancing to the status of midwifery apprentices. It is an exciting time for everyone—but not without the occasional growing pains and the confusion of transition. God is giving us all daily grace to deal with the shifting roles and responsibilities!



We have been gifted with the recent arrival of a young midwife from Idaho who is here as a guest helper for at least three months while seeking direction for the next step in her future. Lizzie is a Certified Professional Midwife who brings lots of passion and enthusiasm along with her. She also brings a wealth of experience, having served two years at a very high-volume birth center in the Philippines.



Yesterday we hosted a wonderful brunch meeting (fabulous food cooked by our very own Chef-extraordinaire, Greg Norris!) with other midwives here in Oaxaca—both foreign and traditional indigenous. Together with them we are exploring ways to create more credibility as Mexican midwives, along with official government recognition and support. We hope to be a blessing to the fledgling Mexican midwifery association that they have invited us to join.



Finding our way through the maze of government Secretary of Health expectations continues to be an adventure. Last week we were convinced that Plan ABC is definitely the way to go, but then this week we were presented with new information from another government official that perhaps Plan XYZ would be a better approach. So we continue to investigate and research our options, while enjoying our expanding network of government contacts and well-wishers.



This month is the time for our first annual Casa Compasiva staff retreat! Preparations are now under way for a two-day retreat to take place next week. Unfortunately, due to financial constraints, we are not able to have it at a pretty little local hotel which was our first choice. Nothing daunted, however, we are making to plans to enjoy a very economical, home-grown retreat here in our own town at a local mission center.



And speaking of finances, let me just mention that while Casa Compasiva is advancing rapidly on many fronts at once, this advance will all come to a screeching halt without a fresh infusion of funds very soon!!! Because we are attempting to keep our rates affordable for our (mostly) low-income clients, the income from births and prenatal appointments does not yet begin to cover our expenses. Someday it will--when our birth volume is higher-- but that day is not yet. In the meantime, we are still looking to God to provide for our financial needs from outside sources-- could you be one of those sources? 

If you appreciate the work of Casa Compasiva and would like to see us continue to help the mothers and babies of Oaxaca, please feel free to contribute. All donations are cheerfully accepted! :)

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