In the coffee-growing region of Ayarza, Guatemala, access to basic health services is limited. Often smallholder farmers and their families must walk several kilometers to the nearest public health center. To tackle this problem, olam food ingredients (“ofi”) opened a fully equipped health clinic at the entrance of the community’s coffee cherry mill, putting health services on the doorstep of 5,000 people.
The clinic has received a huge amount of support and engagement from the community. In just one day, 276 children were weighed and measured and any who showed signs of malnutrition were referred to the local nutritionist for further support. In our first two weeks of opening, an additional 119 patients received medical treatment and 80 home visits were carried out. The clinic continues to be busy, with over 30 people from the community seeking a consultation every day. Three days per week, the nurse visits farmers at home to talk with them about preventative health measures.
Participating foundation Funcafé’s Executive Director said:
"We are working together on preventative health. We hope to help the community prevent disease by providing education on useful steps that can be taken to avoid health issues. We are also ensuring that people don’t have to travel far from their community to receive primary health care, which is of course incredibly important.”
This supports ofi’s global commitment to support rural communities. Progress is being tracked and supported by data from the ‘Health and Nutrition’ metrics of AtSource, including % of farmer households with access to healthcare facilities.