Today began with a trip to the market in Zone 1 of Guatemala City to purchase some tools for our OpenSocket Repair Kits. These repair kits are going out to several organizations we've partnered with in Central America to allow them to repair the OpenSocket should anything wear out with use.
We visited a whole range of hardware stores in the market looking for the right supplies. Instead of having all of their stock out in the open, these stores displayed one of each item, and then (sometimes) stocked more in the back. To show all of their wares in very small spaces, the shopkeepers utilize every single space they can, even the ceiling!
After we purchased all of our supplies in Zone 1 of Guatemala City, we hopped in a taxi to head off to Zone 18 to meet with our patient for today. We've gotten pretty good at cramming all four of us into the tiny taxis here (note the 6 knees visible across the bottom of the picture above)
When we got to Zone 18 (after passing the military presence keeping the uneasy peace there), we arrived at the house of Julio and his family. After Julio welcomed us into his home, we jumped right into fitting him with the OpenSocket.
Julio was trained as a welder, and worked his way up until he became the manager and owner of his own welding operation. He and his tightly-knit family are an inspiring group of individuals. When Julio first started out, he was living in a house constructed of nylon walls. Now, he and his family have a comfortable and welcoming home.
Unlike many of the patients we work with, Julio already had a prosthesis. However, the prosthesis he had been using was more than 20 years old, and barely hanging on through several repairs he had made. As a welder, Julio has a huge demand for a prosthesis, and puts it though heavy use on a daily basis.
As soon as we were finished fitting the OpenSocket, Julio was eager to try it out using his tools. He was very pleased with how much lighter the OpenSocket was than his old prosthesis. He was also excited about using the brand new V2P terminal device we included with his OpenSocket, trying it out with his angle grinder and using it to eat lunch.
After Julio's family invited us to join them for a fantastic Guatemalan lunch of carne asada, ensalada de rábano, arroz con maíz, aguacate, and tortillas, we all stepped outside to take a group picture. It was fantastic to spend so much time with such a wonderful family.
Meanwhile, on the other side of the world in India, Bump Field Director in South Asia Sudeep Gowrishankar has begun fitting patients with the OpenSocket at a Rotary camp there. Read More Here.