Please logged in to see pending comments.
While walking down towards the city center I ran into a large protest on Sunday. Protests have been taking place around the country after a 20% gas price hike starting January 1st. After talking to people and doing some research it seems that the protests run deeper that the gas price hike itself. There is general discontent with the government as of late spanning a wide range of issues including corruption, the soft stance taken by Mexico's leadership on US President elect Donald Trump's position on Mexican immigration and trade, inflation, and low wages. While the Guadalajara protest was peaceful, they locked the door to the art museum that I was standing in as a precaution. On Wednesday, a protest in sMexico City resulted in 250 arrests. A recent poll showed President Enrique Pena Nieto's approval rating sitting at around 25%. For a good background analysis of the Mexican political protests, follow this link... www.nbcnews.com/mexico/analysis-mexican-gas-price-hike-fear-trump-trigger-protests-n705156
I arrived in Guadalajara on Monday and was met by the Projects Abroad staff at the airport. My contact person was a native Guadalajaran who gave me plenty of introductory tips about the city during the ride to my host family. I was shown to a wonderful old house in a very hip section of the city. My host mother introduced me to several other volunteers and boarders that I would be rooming with during my time in Guadalajara. The ciity is beautiful at night and I am greatly enjoying the temperature differential relative to Minneapolis (75 degrees in Guadalajara vs. 2 degrees in Minneapolis as of this writing). The time differential relative to the states is convenient as the city sits squarely in the Central time zone and is in the same time zone as Minneapolis.
During my first day in the city, my project liason showed me several parts of the region of the city that I will be living in during my stay. While much of the historic architecture has been removed to make way for newer buildings, classic structures can still be seen in the basillicas near the local city centers. I experienced an enormous open air market that had shops of practically every variety. I made a comment to Rosa (my project liason) that you could get just about anything but a car here. She replied, "Don't say that too loud or somebody may come over and say 'You need a car? I can get you a car. Stay here, I'll be right back." My house is only a few blocks from one of the main thoroughfares in the city and the avenue becomes a major party zone in the later hours.is The side benefit of this is a thriving business among street vendors (especially tacos) to service the fiesta crowd. ...
Just enjoying family in the United States during the week prior to leaving for my project in Mexico, but becoming progressively more excited for my upcoming project. In preparation for my project, I did a quick study of Guadalajara in preparation for my travels and learned a great deal about the city in the process. nited
Guadalajara is located in the state of Jalisco located in the central region. It is the fourth most populous city in Mexico, is the second most populous metropolitan area in Mexico behind Mexico City, and is the 10th largest city in Latin America in GDP, total urban area, and population. Guadalajara is also considered a major cultural center of Mexico and is the host for several internatioal events (je. The Guadalajara International Film Festival). The city was founded in 1541.
As this is an international development/women's rights project and NAFTA has become a hot-button issue in contemporary politics, I did some background research into the role of NAFTA in promoting women's involvement in the labor force. Dell (2005) supports the claim of NAFTA increasing opportunities for women in the workforce by "caus(ing) female intensive export production to expand in central Mexico, and reduced the ability of domestic firms to discriminate against women by increasing product market competition." Such research would support the claim that free trade agreements improve conditions for small business development for women in particular and disadvantaged groups more broadly. Small buisness opportunities could easily be promoted by the use of modern technology to connect to financing, international markets, and consultation expertise.
Now I will explain more about the other project I have been volunteering at. I am currently in Atlanta Airport with a long layover until my connecting flight back home, and this is the first time I’ve had to properly catch up on this.
The Association is for children and young adults with Muscular Dystrophy, a progressive, muscle wasting disease caused by a lack of the protein dystrophin. It means that there are problems walking and doing everyday activities, and also eventually respiratory and heart problems. Without intervention, a person would not be expected to live beyond their early 20s. Thankfully these days there is a lot more intervention in terms of physiotherapy, in order to maintain some function and strength both in lower and upper limbs, and prevent muscle contractures here as much as possible, and also to maintain the muscles that work the lungs.
In the project I have been helping out with the physiotherapy sessions, using pulmonary and physical therapy to maintain as much function as possible. Stretching and mobilising the joints and spine are really important because in time, muscle contractures develop, especially in the lower legs causing eversion of the feet, and scoliosis in the spine. I also helped with the respiratory therapy sessions, which helps maintain lung volume and prevents infections from occurring. Some of those who came were in their early teens, they were pretty lively, careering about in their wheelchairs and enjoying noisy banter during the group therapy sessions. Others were older and in the more advanced stages of the disease, so needed a lot more help to do everything. Family were often an active part of the therapy sessions, as it is important to educate them on how best to practise the exercises regularly at home. Some of ...
This week I started something new. As well as volunteering in the hospital I went to visit an organisation that works with children and young adults with muscular dystrophy. They have a physiotherapist who works at the project and does therapy with the clients who come, sometimes with their parents, or by themselves. They also meet others here their age with the same condition, and there is a chance for them to have tutoring with their schoolwork. So for a couple of days this week I helped out with the therapy treatment and got to find out a bit more about what it is like to have this condition. I will write more next time.
At the hospital in Zapopan, I am carrying on helping with the outpatient physiotherapy there, and I'm getting to know some of the regular patients a bit more. Some of them speak a bit of English which gives me the chance to have certain things translated, and with others I am using the basic Spanish I know to have simple conversations - VERY simple conversations! One of our regular patients has no humeral head in one arm, and she explained to me how she might be getting a prosthetic one. I was able to find out about how the strength in her injured arm has increased over timE due to all the therapy she has received, and what she can do now compared to before. There have also been some physiotherapy students in practising, which has meant we are able to be more efficlient in how we treat the patients.
I will write more next time, I am in Puerto Vallarta and the beach is calling!