January 2012 – There are countless stories of compassion, healing and hope at the Community Health Center of West Palm Beach. Often the individuals and families that visit the Center for help become a blessing to the staff and volunteers. One such family in particular was desperate and needed help. Manuel, a husband and father of two little children had an accident and needed brain surgery. He had just been released from the hospital and the family did not have any financial resources to connect to a primary care physician for follow up visits and continued care.
Manuel began experiencing random seizures that made it impossible for him to drive or maintain employment. In addition, he could not afford the medication necessary to control the seizures. Gema, his wife, was the only one in the family who could work and consequently had to leave her family for most of the day. Gema was in constant fear while working. She frequently called home throughout the day wondering if her husband had a seizure and the children were unattended and frightened. This family had nowhere to turn. They did not have the resources to go to a doctor or go back to the hospital for help. Someone in the community told the family about the Community Health Center of West Palm Beach.
The family came to the Center and Manuel was able to connect with a physician on a regular basis. In addition, Manuel was now able to receive medication much needed to prevent his regular seizures. This family situation, which seemed hopeless, was now transformed. The Gema was now able to return to work and Manuel was able to care for the children and recover without fear of seizures. Without the services and care from the Community Health Center, this family’s future was uncertain and most likely not promising. However, because of the staff, volunteers and funding partners of the Center, this family’s future is full of possibility.
Allegany Franciscan Ministries funding partnership began with Community Health Center in 2004 when they were formerly known as Samaritan Gardens Health Center. To date we have awarded grants totaling $235,000 to the Community Health Center to provide primary health care services to the individuals and families that are uninsured or underinsured within the inner city of West Palm Beach.