When they put our patience and flexibility to the test. The experience of moving a whole dental clinic is challenging in many ways. The uncertainty of knowing if we are going to continue to have enough patients or start from scratch is a feeling that beats before, during and after the move. An experience that we have already lived in the past and prepared us for these types of circumstances. A story of lessons learned full of frustrations and satisfactions. Getting used to a new home takes time and in the end, we are sure that we will appreciate the effort. 

  

Brief History

More than two years ago, in order to start with the Dental Clinic, we decided to find a suitable place to carry out our activities. We had the opportunity to meet with the Swiss Consul Maja Datwyler and we presented our social project to her. She graciously accepted our proposal and we made the rental agreement. The cost of the rent was USD 250.- which was a very affordable price for us. For more than two years, we occupied the second and third floors of the Swiss Consulate building in the city of Cusco. Also, there is a church called Ekklesia on the first level. Consul Maja Datwyler is also a leader of the aforementioned Church.

As soon as we started, our patients began to multiply immediately, thanks to the high quality of service we provide. The way to recruit patients was solely through the social network Facebook. Most of the patients came because they heard good comments about us. One of the most frequent comments is "they respect the agreed time for the appointment" or also "The staff is very kind to us." People spread the word and dental chairs kept full.

Due to the close relationship we have with the Ekklesia Church, we made an agreement to be able to provide oral health to the social programs administered by this institution. We were able to see many poor children in a situation of neglect. We naturally expected to find a very deteriorated oral health condition. There is a direct relationship between poverty and general health condition. We managed to carry out two free monthly campaigns for two years with the participation of volunteer dentists whom we recruited whenever we needed them.

We are very grateful for the opportunity they gave us to serve the population of Cusco, especially the most vulnerable. The lease expire on December 31st, 2021. Finding a new location for the Dental Clinic was a new challenge. After doing a search throughout the city and discarding many places, we finally decided to rent a two-story house in Urb. Cerveceros del Cusco. That is where we are now.

Moving Process

On December 17th, 2021 we started the move. All the staff were ready to help. One of the most challenging parts of the move was hauling and loading everything into a large truck. You have to be careful not to break anything. All the members of the Con Corazón team were collaborating with the transfer of things, we also hired people who could do the heaviest work. A very delicate issue was the dismantling of the dental units, which had to be done by people who were experts in the field.

The most difficult part came after moving things to the new location. We talked about the installation of all the dental furniture and equipment in the new place. There were different professionals who had to work together. Team of plumbers, electricians, carpenters, painters, surveillance cameras and internet service connection, all were due to finish the job in about a week. Unfortunately, it was not like that and they took longer than we had planned.

The workers hired to carry out these installations did not comply with the plan or the agreed work schedule. If the plumber do not finish his part, the carpenter could not start; and when the plumber finished on an unscheduled day, the carpenter was busy elsewhere in the city, where someone else had also hired his services. It was a frustrating time, where our patience and flexibility were put to the test. This delay greatly impaired us with the initiation of patient care. Every day that passed, we lost money, while delaying the appointment of many waiting patients.

The placement of our sign marks the end of the entire moving and installation process. Thanks to the talent of Danièle Turkier, who designed the sign, we were able to start over with our oral health activities. Finally, at the beginning of the year 2022, we finished with almost everything. Meanwhile we are working with the licensing processes of the municipality and the Ministry of Health.

Two employees are cleaning the new location Building with our new Dental Clinic from outside Treament of first patients in the new dental clinic

A new Home

Now we pay USD 650.- for rent. The new rental contract only allows us to stay one year in our new premises. Unfortunately, the political uncertainty in our country and in some other parts of the world, bring economic consequences, affecting the increase in income tax in an uncertain way. This makes the owner of the house do not want to take risks. Let's hope that by the end of the year we will be able to renew a new contract and that the rental price does not increase.

We are so excited to start the year with a nice new view from the window. The expectations for us are very high and the sky is the limit. The place is bigger and more spacious and we need some furniture like a desk and a set of sofas for the comfort of the staff. We also need a microwave oven to be able to heat the lunch we bring from home. We want our new home to be welcoming to all the workers and patients who come to our center.

Our dental assistant Indira says: "I am impressed that our appointment schedule is almost full. Happily, our front desk phone is still ringing, despite the pause we had during the move-in period. It is true, that before the move, we felt nervous thinking that we were going to have fewer patients. However, we are happy that the result was the opposite of what we initially thought." Indira also guides patients to find our new address, through text messages, sending the location via Google Maps and also giving references to well-known and popular places in the area so that they can find the new Dental Clinic Con Corazón. Our patients are already arriving.

 

January 2022


 

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Testimonials

"Over the years, the Rotary Club of Aarau has been able to generate various projects together with Con Corazón. One of the highlights was certainly the construction of the Medical Center at over 4,000 meters above sea level. The cooperation is always very sustainable, efficient and professional."

Martin Bachmann

Martin Bachmann

Rotary Club Aarau

"What I remember most about my involvement was working with the people in the remote Andean region, where the organization provides valuable support. The unique insight into the culture and way of life of those people is definitely one of the most beautiful and memorable of my stay."

Livia Hollenstein

Livia Hollenstein

Volunteer

"The Andes are my birthplace and I feel deeply connected to this region. To have the opportunity to support the people there in a direct way and without detours is something great. Knowing that donations are going to the right place, to the right people, is what I thank and trust Con Corazón for."

Anna Alberti

Anna Alberti

Donor & Visitor

"I support Con Corazón because Danièle's involvement has convinced me, from the beginning, that the help arrives directly, without any detours. What is also fascinating to me is the constant further development and the focus on the long-term perspective. The highlight was the visit in 2019."

Cordula Sonderegger

Cordula Sonderegger

Donor & Visitor

"I have been following Con Corazón for years, so a visit to Peru was logical and very precious for me. It was extremely impressive to enter into this unknown world and to capture it photographically. As a professional photographer, I still enjoy the impressive images from the Andean region."

Hana Solenthaler

Hana Solenthaler

Donor & Visitor

"In August 2019 finally I had the opportunity to go to the Andes in South America. There I had finished one month of volunteering at the dental clinic in Cusco, Peru. I really enjoyed helping poor people through making dental cleanings for the patients. What an incredible team to work with!"

Mette Højborg

Mette Højborg

Volunteer

"Wow, what an impressive landscape at over 4,000 m.a.s.l., what a beautiful place in the Andes, what unbelievable warm-hearted people! Immediately there was another wow, there is a lot to do for me in the next four months! Marampaqui became a second home for me".

Moritz Mitterer

Moritz Mitterer

Volunteer

"'The only thing that can eliminate poverty is to share with each other. ' Mother Teresa's quote points out how important Con Corazón's mission is to fight poverty in the long term and to give people a perspective. I am very grateful that I was able to visit the organization in Peru."

Anna Alberti

Anna Alberti

Donor & Visitor

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