|Fishing economy changing to tourism|
Sometimes in the course of looking for ideas to write about for our weekly blog we come across information that is surprising, or even quite shocking. Part-time resident Karen Rosenberg, LISW, recently emailed me the stats on diabetes in Mexico – and they are awful!
|Tourists enjoying North Beach on a sunny Sunday afternoon|
The economy of Isla Mujeres is gradually shifting from a fishing community to a tourism-based community.
In the busy season from December to May workers can conceivably earn more money in the form of tips from restaurant or bar patrons, but on average most islanders earn around $9.00 USD per day. That does not leave enough money to eat in a healthy manner. Inexpensive processed food and high-sugar beverages are commonplace.
|Affordable – Coke Cola for baby|
We shudder every time we see the young construction workers pedal past on their bicycles clutching their lunch break supplies in one hand. Most days their lunch consists of a two-litre bottle of Coke Cola and a fifty-cent stack of tortillas.
Karen Rosenberg has been coming to Isla for the past eighteen years, and hosting the Portals to the Self: Isla Mujeres Women’s Retreat at the Na Balam Hotel for the past fifteen years.
|Diabetes Clinic workers|
Another community-minded full-time resident, Kathy Ennis RN, pitched in to help with the clinics.
Then Geovanny Avalos from the Cruz Roja Isla Mujeres, added his invaluable assistance, helping the health professionals with testing and diabetes education.
Registration of the walk-ins is handled by members of theWomen’s Beading Cooperative so this effort is a collaboration of ex-pats and local Islenos.
|Members of Women’s Beading Cooperative at art fair|
So, what can you do to help?The organizers are in desperate need of donations of test strips and meters, preferably Contour and Contour Next brands. The Fifth Annual Diabetes Clinic will be held on Thursday October 23rd, starting at9:00 a.m., at the Red Cross. The clinic will continue during the day until the supplies run out. They will perform testing of blood sugar levels, teach the recipients how to use the meters to monitor their blood glucose, counsel them in diabetes education and give replacement supplies when needed.