Looking at Child Health in St. Kitts and Nevis

 

 

 

Latasha Jennings is a 3rd year Biology and Women, Gender Sexuality Studies Double Major. She traveled to St. Kitts and Nevis for the UVA summer class in Social Determinants of Child Health. Below are some of her photos and experiences.

fIvor Walters Primary School in Nevis

Similar to our visit to Tucker Clarke Primary School, we gave presenations to the children at Ivor Walters Primary School in Nevis on asthma, how it is triggered, and how it can be managed. The goal of our presentations was to show children that they can still lead healthy, active lives with asthma.

Similar to our visit to Tucker Clarke Primary School, we gave presentations to the children at Ivor Walters Primary School in Nevis on asthma, how it is triggered, and how it can be managed. The goal of our presentations was to show children that they can still lead healthy, active lives with asthma.

We visited this school twice during our stay in St. Kitts. During the first visit, we presented the teachers with the books and teaching supplies that Dr. Richardson donated to the school and then briefly observed a class. During the second visit, we gave a talk to children in grades K-2 about what asthma is, what triggers it, and what they should do if they begin to have an asthma attack.

We visited this school twice during our stay in St. Kitts. During the first visit, we presented the teachers with the books and teaching supplies that Dr. Richardson donated to the school and then briefly observed a class. During the second visit, we gave a talk to children in grades K-2 about what asthma is, what triggers it, and what they should do if they begin to have an asthma attack.

The National Museum is located in St. Kitts at the meeting point of Basseterre and Port Zante. The building in which it is housed was completed in 1894, and it used to serve as the Treasury Building for St. Kitts. It opened its doors as the National Museum for the first time in 2002.

The National Museum is located in St. Kitts at the meeting point of Basseterre and Port Zante. The building in which it is housed was completed in 1894, and it used to serve as the Treasury Building for St. Kitts. It opened its doors as the National Museum for the first time in 2002.

In 2005, St. Kitts switched from an economy based on sugar cane production to one based on tourism, and Port Zante pictured above has become a tourist hotspot as a result. Cruise ships dock at the Port, and tourists spend the day shopping at the multitude of shops and craft markets located at the Port.

In 2005, St. Kitts switched from an economy based on sugar cane production to one based on tourism, and Port Zante pictured above has become a tourist hotspot as a result. Cruise ships dock at the Port, and tourists spend the day shopping at the multitude of shops and craft markets located at the Port.

Press Conference at Ivor Walters Primary School in Nevis

A press conference was held during our visit to Ivor Walters Primary School where Dr. Richardson presented the school with children’s books and teaching supplies.

A press conference was held during our visit to Ivor Walters Primary School where Dr. Richardson presented the school with children’s books and teaching supplies.

We were given a tour of one of the six community health centers in Nevis by Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health Nicole Slack-Liburd. These health centers are located within walking distance of the communities they serve and provide primary care to the citizens of Nevis.

We were given a tour of one of the six community health centers in Nevis by Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health Nicole Slack-Liburd. These health centers are located within walking distance of the communities they serve and provide primary care to the citizens of Nevis.

Teaching Assistant, Seleena Moore, along with Dr. Richardson spoke during a press conference in Nevis on the findings of the research the two have done on the social determinants of childhood asthma in St. Kitts and Nevis.

Teaching Assistant, Seleena Moore, along with Dr. Richardson spoke during a press conference in Nevis on the findings of the research the two have done on the social determinants of childhood asthma in St. Kitts and Nevis.

 

During our stay in St. Kitts, we went on a short hike into the island’s rainforest and visited the location where all of the island’s freshwater is collected. This water is filtered, treated, and piped down to the rest of the island.

During our stay in St. Kitts, we went on a short hike into the island’s rainforest and visited the location where all of the island’s freshwater is collected. This water is filtered, treated, and piped down to the rest of the island.

Rainforest and Fresh Water Intake1

This UNESCO World Heritage Site was designed by British Army Engineers and built by African slaves. Construction of the Fortress began in 1690 and continued intermittently for just over 100 years until completion. The Fortress is now a National Park that is managed by the Brimstone Hill Fortress National Park Society.

This UNESCO World Heritage Site was designed by British Army Engineers and built by African slaves. Construction of the Fortress began in 1690 and continued intermittently for just over 100 years until completion. The Fortress is now a National Park that is managed by the Brimstone Hill Fortress National Park Society.

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A glimpse of Guatemala

Sandy Hoang is a 1st year student in the College of Arts and Sciences studying abroad on the UVA in Guatemala: Engineering Public Health program. Check out some of her beautiful pictures of Guatemala and thoughtful reflections that go with them!

A Mayan woman carrying firewood on her head makes the difficult hike through the hilly plantation with her son. In the rural indigenous villages, it is the woman’s duty to collect and carry the firewood to her home, where she uses the wood to cook. Work in Guatemala is often gender-divided, with women working at home and men working on the fincas, or plantations.

A Mayan woman carrying firewood on her head makes the difficult hike through the hilly plantation with her son. In the rural indigenous villages, it is the woman’s duty to collect and carry the firewood to her home, where she uses the wood to cook. Work in Guatemala is often gender-divided, with women working at home and men working on the fincas, or plantations.

In the market, women display and sell their traje weavings. Traje is woven using traditional methods taught in Mayan culture for hundreds of years. With creative and meticulous detail from the weaver, traje is considered a powerful art in Guatemala. Each traje takes around two months to finish and each village has a unique traje design.

In the market, women display and sell their traje weavings. Traje is woven using traditional methods taught in Mayan culture for hundreds of years. With creative and meticulous detail from the weaver, traje is considered a powerful art in Guatemala. Each traje takes around two months to finish and each village has a unique traje design.

Washing clothes in the lake is not only a burden because of a walk, especially with the weight of wet clothes, but it also damages the lake because of the detergents and bleach that are used in the process. These pilas offer an environmentally and personally safe alternative to washing clothes in the lake, and was created by the San Lucas Toliman Mission as a way to improve the health of women.

Washing clothes in the lake is not only a burden because of a walk, especially with the weight of wet clothes, but it also damages the lake because of the detergents and bleach that are used in the process. These pilas offer an environmentally and personally safe alternative to washing clothes in the lake, and was created by the San Lucas Toliman Mission as a way to improve the health of women.

Before the Spanish conquest in the sixteenth century, Mayans lived in tight-knit communities. These ruins cue back to the grand architecture of this time, where hundreds of people would live in each square of land. The communities would often feud against each other and cautions were taken to prevent sabotage. These seemingly ancient communities persisted up until the sixteenth century and show how important Mayan identity still is in Guatemalan culture.

Before the Spanish conquest in the sixteenth century, Mayans lived in tight-knit communities. These ruins cue back to the grand architecture of this time, where hundreds of people would live in each square of land. The communities would often feud against each other and cautions were taken to prevent sabotage. These seemingly ancient communities persisted up until the sixteenth century and show how important Mayan identity still is in Guatemalan culture.

Many men and women gather in the center of Xela to buy fruits and vegetables grown by their neighbors. With rich soil and ideal weather, agriculture happily continues to be a huge source of  income in Guatemala. I was immediately reminded of the issue between the US and Guatemala during the United Fruit Company crisis in the early 1950s, when the US exploited Guatemalan  land and government for the growth of the US-owned fruit business in Guatemala. Guatemala is  a land filled with agricultural potential, as well as agricultural exploitation.

Many men and women gather in the center of Xela to buy fruits and vegetables grown by their neighbors. With rich soil and ideal weather, agriculture happily continues to be a huge source of income in Guatemala. I was immediately reminded of the issue between the US and Guatemala during the United Fruit Company crisis in the early 1950s, when the US exploited Guatemalan land and government for the growth of the US-owned fruit business in Guatemala. Guatemala is a land filled with agricultural potential, as well as agricultural exploitation.

At the crater of Volcano Chikabal is a sacred lagoon, where Mayans offer flowers and prayers to the god of the rain for better crops. While I was there, I also stumbled upon a Mayan ritual, which consisted of chants from the Mayans and a large fire. I was surprised at the persistence of Mayan culture and identity despite Western influences from the Spaniards and the US.

At the crater of Volcano Chikabal is a sacred lagoon, where Mayans offer flowers and prayers to the god of the rain for better crops. While I was there, I also stumbled upon a Mayan ritual, which consisted of chants from the Mayans and a large fire. I was surprised at the persistence of Mayan culture and identity despite Western influences from the Spaniards and the US.

This manually-operated hydroelectric plant offers a modest number of megawatts for a portion of the villages in the outskirts of Xela. Although the supervisor of the plant has requested to the municipality of Xela the use of automated machines to power the plant, the government denied his offer in favor of more jobs, since the cost of automated machines far exceeds the cost of workers. Before seeing the plant, I expected to see a large Hoover dam, and was surprised to see how small the plant actually was.

This manually-operated hydroelectric plant offers a modest number of megawatts for a portion of the villages in the outskirts of Xela. Although the supervisor of the plant has requested to the municipality of Xela the use of automated machines to power the plant, the government denied his offer in favor of more jobs, since the cost of automated machines far exceeds the cost of workers. Before seeing the plant, I expected to see a large Hoover dam, and was surprised to see how small the plant actually was.

Unlike in USA cemeteries, Guatemalan graves are above ground because of the high water levels underground due to the rainy season and the lake. Death in Guatemala is viewed not with so much solemnity as in the US, but, rather, with a sort of celebration of their passed ancestors and their reunion with Christ. The bright colors and the detailed architecture attest to this attitude with the dead.

Unlike in USA cemeteries, Guatemalan graves are above ground because of the high water levels underground due to the rainy season and the lake. Death in Guatemala is viewed not with so much solemnity as in the US, but, rather, with a sort of celebration of their passed ancestors and their reunion with Christ. The bright colors and the detailed architecture attest to this attitude with the dead.

Lake Atitlan, surrounded by three large volcanoes, is the home of many indigenous villages such as San Martin, San Lucas Toliman, and Santiago. The lake is a source of drinking water,  bathing water, and washing water. Over the years, the lake has been a popular visit for tourists,  and the indigenous population has adapted to this interest with markets and stores that has  transformed the lives of the Mayans. Increasing pollution of the lake has also created problems in  the indigenous health, and many NGOs have tried to combat this solution.

Lake Atitlan, surrounded by three large volcanoes, is the home of many indigenous villages such as San Martin, San Lucas Toliman, and Santiago. The lake is a source of drinking water, bathing water, and washing water. Over the years, the lake has been a popular visit for tourists, and the indigenous population has adapted to this interest with markets and stores that has transformed the lives of the Mayans. Increasing pollution of the lake has also created problems in the indigenous health, and many NGOs have tried to combat this solution.