Global Veterinary Alliance (GVA) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing veterinary medicine, education, and research to underserved communities around the world! Every June and December, we stay a Monty's Beach Lodge for 10 days and travel to communities surrounding Jiquilillo, Nicaragua to set up mobile veterinary clinics in communities that do not have access to veterinary care for their animals. Every day, our team of veterinarians, veterinary students, and veterinary technicians travel with supplies in a repurposed school bus and set up a functioning veterinary clinic with surgical and laboratory capabilities in a community. Our goal for each day is to provide a wellness clinic that can vaccinate as well as address animal health concerns, perform research to better understand the diseases that affect the area, as well as help control animal overpopulation through spaying and neutering. We evaluate and treat pets such as dogs and cats as well as working and livestock animals like pigs, cattle, and horses. This trip is facilitated by veterinary students from California and made possible by student fundraising efforts and donations from our generous public supporters
Our most recent trip was an overwhelming success, with 4 veterinarians, 1 veterinary technician, and 13 veterinary students, we successfully saw over 400 patients across 6 communities at 7 different clinics. The communities we visit in Nicaragua are Jiquilillo (at the school walking distance from Monty's!), Cosigüina, Padre Ramos, Potosí, El Tintal, and Quilaca. An integral part of this project is our ability to work out of Monty's Beach Lodge in Jiquilillo, as it provides not only an incredible location for our volunteers to visit on the Northwestern coast of Nicaragua (and unwind after a long clinic with surfing, yoga, and some serious hammock time), but also caters to all of our veterinary work! From the safe storage of our medical supplies to the vital help of their community liaison Alan Quiroz Vargas prior to and at our clinics, Monty’s has aided in the sustainability of our mobile clinic.
For our upcoming trip this June, we aim to provide not only veterinary care, but also research and education to community members. We already have many initiatives in the making for ectoparasite and infectious disease research as well as client education directed at adults (via informative posters) and children (via coloring books). As mentioned before, we are striving to move this project in a more sustainable and collaborative direction, which often go hand in hand. We have brought on the amazing Nicaraguan veterinarian Dr. Jasson Figueroa as not only a core position within our trip, but also as an advisor for community relations. With his help, we are hoping to improve our clinic and bring on more Nicaraguan help within our trip team for the upcoming trips (in the form of veterinarians and veterinary students), in the hopes that one day, we can turn over the mobile clinic to community leaders.
We can’t wait to be back in Jiquilillo for our next clinic June 5th-15th!