Serving at Hospital Saldañas

Just down the road from Love & Hope is Hospital Saldañas. It’s a place we’ve had occasion to visit from time to time when someone falls off their bike and needs stitches or has a stomach bug that just won’t quit. Like all public hospitals in El Salvador, the medical care is free, but as the saying goes, you get what you pay for. The doctors are kind and helpful, but the hospital itself is old, and the lack on investment in the facility shows. The emergency room is dirty and warn, and the bathrooms are dark and wet. Since Saldañas is our nearest emergency care center, we decided to do what we could to make it a better place. Not only for ourselves, but also for our community.

In March, a team from Ohio Wesleyan University worked on the emergency and examination rooms. They cleaned and painted from 6 to midnight all while patients were coming in and out for critical care. The change was dramatic, and the staff was excited about how clean and bright everything looked. They said it, “Looked like Heaven.”

This June, we enlisted our Summer Team to tackle an even bigger project: the bathrooms. Of all the tasks we’ve asked a team to tackle, cleaning and rehabbing the emergency room bathrooms in a public hospital (while in service) is perhaps the least appealing. They were undeterred, and dove in head first! The results were remarkable.

This is what the bathrooms looked like before our team got started.



We began with a good cleaning from top to bottom.



The old toilets had to go.


Next we put down a new tile floor, and also tiled up the walls in the toilet stalls and shower room.






Finally, we put in new toilets, a mirror, and a shower head.



Finally, a few finishing touches.


The hospital staff was excited by the transformation and grateful for all the hard work done by our team. We know their efforts will benefit the thousands of patients who visit Saldañas for years to come.