Letters — 12 December 2014

Dear Editor,

Besides the beauty of God’s creation of Mother Nature, I always see the beautiful children of Belize as the greatest blessing of my beloved country of adoption.

That’s why it is really hard for me to understand that we are not always looking after the needs of our children (and mothers) because they are, after all, the future of our country.

LAST WEEK ANOTHER CAYE CAULKER BABY DIED!

The more it changes the more it stays the same!

How many babies have to die before we can provide a responsible emergency service for pregnant mothers in Caye Caulker? Responsibility is the ability to respond. And again we do not have that situation here on the island.

I wish the authorities in charge would understand the terrible pain one suffers when you have to bury one of your children. It often destroys lives because it always stays with you. It certainly destroys many marriages of people who go through this.

The excuse is our island circumstances — no helicopter, bad weather, no boat/captain available.

When our baby died it was New Year’s Day; the doctor was drunk and could not respond, and the person who was responsible for the helicopter said she was not sick enough to qualify for transport. When I got hold of the helicopter people myself, they had difficulty finding a sober pilot, so when they showed up 5 hours later it was too late.

When we showed up two days later at the Karl Heusner Hospital with our oldest son, the Chief Pediatrician told us that it was the right thing to come to the hospital two hours after the first symptoms appeared. Which parent runs to the hospital after two hours when your child has a fever? But it was at that time that an unseen serious infection was caught from the sea. They used 21 bags of IV liquid in the 36 hours he spent at the hospital, which is more than extreme. But he survived! Thanks to God and Dr. Rosado and his nurses.

Having gone through all this, I do not wish for this to happen to anybody else, so when the newly elected Village Council Chairman remarked that the Village Council and its Chairman alone cannot solve the problems of Caye Caulker, I asked myself, “What can I do for my community?”

Having a working relationship with our only qualified midwife, Ms. Juana Cowo, who assisted us with the birth of our last baby, Raphael, 7 years ago, I started to see the advantages of having a clinic for women and children here on Caye Caulker.

For over a year now, I have been working with the idea to transform Cocoplum into a clinic with our local midwife Ms. Juana and a connection from abroad to provide an experienced doctor and the necessary equipment, like a set of incubators. A couple of years ago, a set of twin premature babies died because of the unavailability of an incubator on the island.

But like everything these days, to get a project off the ground without funding is not easy, and not being part of an organization is another reason why we could not receive an offer from a foreign embassy who could possibly donate 2 incubators.

At the present moment, my prayers for a solution have not yet been heard, but we are still working on the project!

If there is anybody who can assist us in any way to further the creation of this project to provide a clinic for women and children in Caye Caulker, please contact us at Cocoplum Gardens, Caye Caulker, # 226- 0226, or cocoplumgardens@yahoo.com, or Skype# chriss.roggema.

Thank You!

Chriss Roggema,
Cocoplum, Caye Caulker

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