Summer Community Public Health 2014, Issue I
Brrr... Summer Time!
In the midst of our Spring Semester activities, arrived our new participants of the Summer Community Public Health (CPH) Program, bundled in their thick jackets and fully prepared to embrace the winter months in Buenos Aires.
They started off with a presentation of the program and a warm welcome dinner at Prosciutto Restaurant. The students’ first week was brimming with workshops, Yellow Fever vaccines in preparation for their trip to Misiones Province, language integration activities and tea with their host families. Soon after, they got to work and took their COPI exams, partook in personal interviews and started classes right away!
Although the CPH students are intensively learning about the Argentine system of health and preparing for their field work, they are also immersing themselves in cultural activities.
On May 29th, the students went to the Cultural Center of Recoleta to experience a famous, upbeat show containing acrobats, aerialists, swimming and music. After a 2-year tour around Brazil, New York, London, Moscow, Greece, Belgium, Holland, Israel, Spain, Taiwan and Manila, Fuerzabruta came back to where their incredible trip started: right here in Buenos Aires. The show was a success with the Spring Semester students, so we decided to take another round, resulting in high popularity among the CPH students as well.
Soccer: Argentina vs. Trinidad & Tobago
On June 4th, just a few days before the start of the World Cup, the students had a chance to see the national Argentine soccer team compete against Trinidad and Tobago in Buenos Aires’ well-known River Plate Stadium. Everyone went dressed as hinchas, or fans of Argentina, harmoniously incorporated with their light blue and white surroundings.
The stadium quaked and rumbled as the students joined the rest of the crowd to cheer on Lionel Messi! It was a very exciting game and, as expected, Argentina ended up winning 3-0!
Trip to Iguazú
Not long after, on June 6th, the students took a trip to the city of Puerto Iguazú to see Iguazú Falls, one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World, and to visit other attractions. Iguazu Falls is located in Misiones Province in a corner of Argentina that borders both Brazil and Paraguay.
On their first day, the students went to Hospital SAMIC in Puerto Iguazú and had the chance to speak to the Chief of Medicine, who gave them a perspective on health care in the province.
They also visited Hito Tres Fronteras, or Triple Border, located in the west of the town, where the Iguazú and Paraná rivers merge to connect Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay. From this viewpoint, one can see Brazil’s green and yellow flag across one side of the river, and further away, Paraguay’s red, white and blue.
Located about 40 kilometers from Puerto Iguazú, one encounters the town of Wanda, famous for its Minas de Wanda, mines of semiprecious stones including agate, amethyst, topaz, jasper and quartz. A number of mining establishments in Wanda not only remove the stones, but also cut, polish and produce jewelry.
The students took a guided tour through the mines on the second day of their trip, where they were able to appreciate the different areas of the beautiful deposits.
They also had lunch in the National Park of Iguazú and finally got to see the waterfalls! Compared to Niagra Falls, Iguazú is a powerhouse. On the way to Iguazú, there was a huge storm and the rain continued throughout the whole trip. On any other trip, one would assume that rain is far from ideal, but when the students reached their destination, the falls were much larger than usual. The weather in Iguazú dips about five or six times a year, resulting in falls that are absolutely miraculous.
On the last day of the trip, the students visited Ruinas de San Ignacio. San Ignacio was founded in 1632 by the Jesuits in what was then called the Province of Paraguay and is now divided among Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay. The ruins, some of the most visited, are also some of the best preserved in the area.
Although they were originally built with local red sandstone, the width of the walls is around 2 meters, which has allowed for them to remain intact for centuries. In 1984, the ruins were designated as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.
After a weekend of rain and adventures, the students ended the trip with a peaceful walk along the promenade of Posadas, the capital of Misiones Province, where they boarded the plane that brought them back to the sounds of the city.
Last weekend, the students took off to their field work sites, which include Olavarría in the Province of Buenos Aires; Concepción de Uruguay in Entre Ríos; and, Montevideo, the capital of Uruguay.