The days are long for the doctor – starting at 7 a.m. with a prayer breakfast and wrapping up at 7 p.m. with evening prayers and dinner. In between, Dr. Diaz-Gonzalez provides medical care for roughly 25 people a day; his mission group will see roughly 700 people during the weeklong trip.
Ryan Dunne, clinical team leader in the pharmacy at Tidelands Georgetown Memorial Hospital, joined one of those mission groups on a trip to Guatemala in 2013.
“Just seeing a completely different lifestyle – it was kind of culture shock when we first got off the plane,” Dunne said. “Here, you have a lot more to work with, but over there you have very limited resources. You have to make the most of what you have — makes you think outside the box.”
But the hugs from those receiving needed medical care make it all worth it.
“Everybody was just so grateful to everybody providing the help,” Dunne said.
Through the years, Dr. Diaz-Gonzalez has developed friends in St. Pedro – he even “sponsors” kids there through Project St. Pedro by providing year-round to help fund their education and other needs. He’s sponsored Mayra, 13, and Jesus, 9, for roughly seven years and always enjoys getting to spend time with them during his mission trips.