Thank you to Florence for taking a suitcase to Varadero, Cuba! [NJT Toronto]
“It went really well. We sure would like to do this again!
We took a taxi from Varadero to Matanza to the Pediatric hospital closest to downtown. Getting a reasonably priced taxi was not easy, especially in the tourist area of Varadero. It cost almost CAD$100 return, but still cheaper than taking the bus for the five of us. If we had to do it again we would make a stopover in Matanza when we made the day trip to Havana – it’s on the way anyways. Our kids found it really interesting to see the local hospital. They think the director of the hospital looks very much like their dentist back home. 🙂
The hospital was packed with families with children. There were play structures in the hospital ground and children were all over them. There was an administrative office right next to the clinic. The receptionist greeted us, read the spanish letter, and invited us to the director’s office, who was really friendly to us. He and the nurses opened the package in front of us and told us that some of the supplies (like medial tapes) were of good quality and were helpful.
We involve our children in volunteer work when we can. It was a very good experience for us to meet the local people and see what real Cuban life was like. We will be on a volunteer mission to a rural village in Zimbabwe for 2 weeks in August (our fourth time there) and would love to bring a suitcase there – their clinics can use a lot of supplies. We are with a local staff and will be able to locate local clinics.