University of East Ramon Magsaysay Memorial medical Center incorporated (UERMMMCI)
Community Placement – Antipolo, Rizal
Leia Evans, Carol Scrivener, Amy Paiva, Lisa Francis, Valerie Butt, Tamara Benjamin
Week 1 (January 10th, 2011)
The six of us flew back to Manila together early on Sunday, January 9th. Dean Carmalita Divivngracia, along with Ms. Elvie and Ms. Joy picked us up from the airport. We were taken for a tour of UERMMMCI in Quezon City and saw some of their lecture theatres and nursing labs in the college of nursing. The facilities were really modern and the faculty were very welcoming and excited to share information about their nursing program with us. We also had the opportunity to meet the president of UERM, Dr. Divivingracia, Dean Carmalita’s husband. (See accompanying photo)
Following our tour we drove up to Antipolo with Ms. Elvie and Ms. Joy. We are staying at the retreat center of St. Michaels. The hospitality here is incredible, every meal is a feast, and the people are very welcoming. Ms. Elvie and Ms. Joy are very open to sharing stories with us including information about the area and people. They are really helping us to adjust to our surroundings and get to know the Filippino culture. They have introduced us to many of the amazing fruit they have here in the Philippines. The Mango and Pineapple we have available in Canada can’t even compare to the sweet juiciness of the fruit that we’ve been enjoying here
We had our first day of our community practicum today (January 10th). We spent the morning orientating and getting to know the Filippino nursing students that we are paired up with. After another extravagant lunch we went out into the community (Barangay in Tagalog) to meet the head of the municipal health office and Captain of the Barangay where we will be spending the majority of our time. Courtesy calls such as these are a way to show respect to those into a position of authority prior to beginning work in an area. This was an interesting experience for us as it is not a common practice in Canada. The afternoon was spent taking part in a community assembly in Barangay Bagong Nayon which we are working in for the next three weeks. It was incredible to witness the community getting involved in the assembly and sharing their needs and concerns with the students. This is something we talk about a lot in community development but is something that none of us have had the opportunity to experience in Canada. We admired the effort that the students put in to include community members in the community development process.
We will be spending the rest of the week providing immunizations, collaborating with the midwife in prenatal health clinics and focusing on children’s health using the integrated management of childhood illnesses framework.