Ceinaquita Community Health Project
Promoting health, literacy, economic, cultural and community development and empowerment
The Indians are the poorest of the poor in Panama. Statistics indicating their poor quality of life contrast sharply with statistics of Panama in general. They have much higher rates of infant mortality, lower life expectancy and lower literacy rates, among other indicators.

The church has carried out a number of projects over the last fifteen years that have benefited the residents of this and surrounding communities. These projects include construction of two swinging bridges across rivers that isolated the residents from schools, clinics and other institutions as well as the installation of a fully functioning dental clinic. There have also been attempts to organize a food cooperative. Short term medical teams have provided medical services once or twice a year in cooperation with the government health authorities.

The Comprehensive Community Health Project marks a change in philosophy. Through this project, we seek to enable the residents to become the leading figures in the efforts to improve their quality of life. The strategy involves organizing and training the women of the communities to be the promoters of the health and well being of their communities.

Project Punta Delgadita
Project Punta Delgadita in Santiago Veraguas, stems from the vision of the IEMPA to bridge the two existing Districts which lay at both geographical extremes of the country. Eventually creating a new District begins with the establishment of a Methodist presence in the Veraguas region (central Panama).
container crane

The strategy is two-fold: (1) create a new community of faith (a new church plant); (2) create a Methodist presence through a community based health care program. IEMPA has begun the construction of a new multi-purpose building in the barrio of Punta Delgadita, Santiago on several acres of land. The multi-purpose building will serve several functions: a place of worship, as a community building for health care programming among the marginalized population of Punta Delgadita, and as a community center for training, education, and as a strategic launching place for regional missions.


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Project Camp Cielito
The focus here is for the development of a camp in El Spino of San Carlos with a philosophy for the conversion, consecration and development of children, youth and adults. To provide a space for fellowship and for strengthening relationships with the Lord, with each other, with oneself and with nature.The camp will contain facilities for training events and offer a place for rest and recreation. The camp will be called “Cielito” (Little Heaven).

Development of the Site

The site spans 19 hectares (approximately 40 acres), divided naturally in two areas by a stream which has water all year round. One of the areas is flat and measures approximately three hectares. The Training Center and Dining Hall will be located in this section. In the other area, which measures approximately 16 hectares, the Camp will be located. Here the terrain has flat sections, high points and uneven areas.

The contour of the land presents a natural entrance to the property which leads to the administrative area. All visitors will first arrive at the administration building and from there proceed to the facilities according to the program in which they will be participating.

It will be possible to hold programs simultaneously in the Training Center and in the Camp Area with no interference between the two programs.

There are common areas that all visitors will use such as the administration building which will house the infirmary, camp store, public phone and office. The dining hall, pools, trails along the stream and the cultural – recreational area will also be used by all visitors.

Due to the large size of the site, it is important that internal access roads be built for the use of small utility vehicles which will transport people, luggage and equipment as well as facilitate the maintenance and repair of the buildings and grounds. All access to the facilities should be by ramps, not steps.

The concept of multi-use should be considered in the design of the facilities. For example, the open spaces will provide for a variety of sports and outdoor activities, the meeting spaces used for many different types of activities and the dining hall could be used for the gathering of all visitors to the site.

The facilities will be designed according to the philosophy that the majority of the activities of the camps will be conducted in small groups.


Background Information: This group initiated their vision by creating a group of biblical reflection that helps the community to come together and reflect about the social and human development of the community. Being a Christian group, it realized their actions begin from their faith and from there to the reality of the community. The group began with bible studies once a month, studying the book of Nehemiah. Within the eight sessions it brought to our attention the need of doing something for our own community. We had many discussions on how we could use what we learned from the book of Nehemiah and put it into our own reality. The group decided to go into the community and through a survey identify what was a priority for them. This is how we came up with the idea of doing latrines.
After analyzing carefully the problems in Bongo, we decided to choose the sceptic tanks project. We found that there are 25 families that have no latrines. We focus on this group and work together using some of the local resources and creativity of the group just as Nehemiah did.
Purpose -Is to come together as a group to share and discuss about our faith in our times and work together to make a better world in our community.
Project – Build 25 complete sceptic tanks for 25 families in the community of Bongo. The selected families are those who do not have latrines system or that are in poor conditions.
Requirements for been a beneficiary:
  • Need to have a water supply system.
  • The family or a member of the family need to contribute with physical work.
  • Support any activity or fundraising activity to collect funds for this project.
  • Contribute with a monetary portion or percentage of the total cost of the project. Amount will vary according to the financial possibilities of the family.
  • Attend a special training/workshops course that will be provided in town.
Estimated cost per family:
  • Plastic Tank (1,200 gallons) $ 400.00
  • Toilet $ 150.00
  • Hand washer (sink) $ 80.00
  • PVC (pipes) $ 50.00
  • Parts and other $ 100.00
Total $780.00
We have 25 families in need of this sceptic tank. 25 families x $780= $19,500. This estimated budget does not include labor. Labor will be throughout volunteers basis.
Petition – We made a petition to the VIMS (Volunteers in Missions) of the United Methodist Church in the USA to support us in this project either with a volunteer group or financial support or both. VIMS already have been working in this community of Bongo. This community is very grateful for your love and friendship. We continue with the bible study every month trying to put our faith in concrete actions and sharing the love of God with the people of this community.
Find them on FB at Bongo Mission Panama