Great Success

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Our PA class put together a diabetes clinic for the homeless on Wednesday morning to finish off our PA week with a bang. Sarah, a fellow classmate, headed the project and about 30 others did the clinic along side of her completely on our own, from start to finish. We hoped for 60 participants being that this was the first time this had ever been done. To everyone's surprise, our final count was 109! What a success! We were even featured on the 5:00 news. (I am trying to get a copy posted soon!) The response from the attendees was incredible and really brought us each back to reality and reminded us that everything we are going through currently will be very much worth it in the end! Here is a blurb from Nancy, the Cherokee Clinic contact that allowed us to come into their clinic to do this, and some photos of the various areas in the clinic...

"I got lots of hugs, and some had me look at their 'new ' shoes! One guy said he had "never been to anything like that before." Many of those who had their BS or BP taken came to have it checked again, and even remembered what it had been Wed. morning. They all said how much they appreciated what you did for them, and your efforts. These folks don't give compliments freely - it was from their heart."

Setting up for the clinic...First stop (my station)...medical history and blood glucose screening. After our station, the patients continued along to have their blood pressure and heart rate measured at the vital signs station and then on to the nutrition and exercise table to be weighed and their body mass index calculated, where they were able to pick up some fruit to take with them (a real novelty in the homeless population!)...
Courtney, myself, Cathy, and Melissa - the sugar screeners

Next stop, eye exams. The eyes, hands, and feet of diabetics are very high risk areas for manifestations of the disease. They were able to pick up gloves at this area just in time for the winter months! (They are calling for the first snow in the mountains here this weekend!)Jessica, the eye examiner
Sarah, our project coordinator

The most exciting was the foot and shoe station! Here the patients stopped for foot massages, new socks, and new shoes! Most of these people hadn't had their feet touched in years and enjoyed every second of the massage and lotion!...
Torrey, the massage professional

New, clean, DRY socks were vital, especially with the pouring rain we had this day, and many were coming in soaked just to get to the clinic! The amount of shoes we had donated was incredible! We were even able to donate leftovers to the clinic and Salvation Army! Danielle, Kate, Melissa - Shoe distributors

We also had a station on making healthy choices, including smoking cessation and a demonstration on what a poor diet does to your body. Here we also gave out hand sanitizer and tissues...
Amanda and Clint - Lifestyle coaches
Diabetes Crew

By far, the best moments of the day were the patients leaving with an enormous smile on their face as they chucked their old shoes in the trash on the way out the door! Brandi and her new friend showing off new shoes!

Humbling! Priceless!


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2 Responses to “Great Success”

Kegorski01 said...

Kara, I LOVE this!! What a great way to help people who really really need it! There are so many homeless people in Albuquerque and I really feel sad for them. I cannot imagine what that is like... You are doing such great things! Way to go!! :) :) :)

Anonymous said...

Great post - novel idea that seemed to be greatly appreciated- you made me feel very grateful for my shoes.Keep up the good work. Grandma