Sandra Wicks reports from Guatemala

Here are 3 reports that we have received from Sandra Wicks regarding her recent trip to Guatemala. She was one of 8 volunteers distributing 66 PETs. in Coban, Malacaton and at the Hope Haven Factory.

Wednesday we did another PET distribution, 36 of them. The weather was very hot, so we spent most of the day sweating profusely while we worked, but it was quite a satisfying experience. Below are a few pictures from the distribution. I interviewed the 10 people who got our Rotary-sponsored PETs. The recipients are VERY grateful and I received many blessings from people for me and our club. Aren’t we blessed to have complete bodies?

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Here is a little story for the bulletin. I’m only sending one picture this time.

When I was participating in the distribution of the PET (Personal Energy Transportation) three-wheeled carts AER sponsored for Guatemala, I attached to the carts an adhesive AER logo that Greg Solomon provided. Before I did that, I explained to the recipients about Rotary, showed them the Rotary wheel, told them I was from Alaska, far north ad west of Canada, explained that my home city was Anchorage and that the Rotary club providing their PET was called Anchorage East.

Then, for fun, after adhering the logo to the cart, I told the recipient that the logo showed that theirs was an official Alaska PET brought to Guatemala on a sled pulled by Eskimo dogs. Some people laughed immediately, some just looked at me from the side of their eyes to see my expression, and others looked down seriously until I nudged them and told them that was a joke (broma). Then they laughed.

After that, I explained that the people putting the PETs together were volunteers who actually made the PET parts in workshops in the States in their spare time and packaged them into kits that were sent to Guatemala for assembly. The recipients expressed great appreciation for the efforts of the volunteers and our club for providing the money that made their PETs possible. Some people asked what a PET costs and they were stunned by what a huge amount of money that is in their economy and that there were real people somewhere who would donate that amount of money to provide them a new lease on life through a mobility device. The standard way of expressing appreciation in Guatemala is “May God bless you”. Believe me, we were all multiply blessed over and over again during the PET distribution I just participated in. It was a very rewarding experience.

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I just returned from our Rotary meeting, and I am still in a state of disbelief. The total number of PETs for which I have a check is 28!!! I will get the letter and check in the mail to PET-Kansas later today. And I talked with Ilse this morning about options for distributing our club’s PETs while I am in Guatemala. I leave tonight.

Sandra

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