Our next trip to visit our Colombian friends and HD family is happening soon- from April 10-24, 2016.
We are planning on going to Choco, Santa Marta, Juan de Acosta, Barranquilla, Medellin and Bogota. This time around, our friend and English journalist Dara Mohammadi (see his page!) from the prestigious newspaper The Guardian, will be joining us during the entire time. His objective is to write an article about the conditions of HD fsamilies worldwide. This is the first time I am bringing someone from the media to document the realities of these families. It will be an exciting- although exhausting- adventure!.
Recently, we have identified through AcolpEH several families affected with HD in Choco (see map). We have been provided assistance to these families who live in a rather remote region of Colombia, close to the border with Panama. We will be visiting them for the first time accompanied by Janeth Mosquera from AcolpEH. We are also in contact with Habitat for Humanity as they have extensive projects in this region of Colombia, to see if they can help with their housing situation. Below are a few pics of the families we are helping.
After Choco, we will visit Santa Marta and San Angel with our dear friend Mariela from Funcovulc, where we will be meeting with people from the Ministry of Health. There are more and more families being reported in this region of the Atlantico province. After Santa Marta we will be heading to Barranquilla, where my colleagues Drs. Claudia Perandones and Roger Cachope will join us. This part of the trip is partially of a social nature, and partially professional, as we are trying to engage leading clinical institutions in Colombia as part of the global platform called Enroll-HD (see here). Through the medical centers in Bogota and Medellin, we hope to reach out to many families in other parts of the country. We hope this will improve their care significantly. We have meetings set up with local neurologists and government agencies. Together I am certain we will make a difference.
I will keep updating the site with information about our upcoming trip!