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6th World Nursing and Healthcare Conference

London, UK

Jill Hecker Fernandes

Jill Hecker Fernandes

University of Wisconsin Eau Claire, USA

Title: Leadership in the community – Clinical immersion in El Salvador


Biography: Jill Hecker Fernandes


This presentation describes a community health clinical experienced by undergraduate nursing students in El Salvador. It allows them to develop relationships with locals, specifically the homeless people who visit “Casa Esperanza” or Hope House. Recent studies have found a lack of support networks for people who are homeless, leading to isolation and loneliness. 33-38% of homeless people spend the day either with other homeless people or alone. Isolation erodes people’s resiliency and ability to cope. Homeless men and women lack basic amenities; they hope to have food to eat when hungry but they also need to be treated as human beings. Casa Esperanza is in San Miguelitito, one of many neighborhoods still affected by the civil war. The people who were not able to leave were forced to live in the streets. At Casa Esperanza, the students prepare and serve meals, talk with the clients, and perform clinical consults. In Fall of 2015, 24 consults were performed, providing various treatments: reading glasses for severe cataracts, vitamins, herbal remedies for sleep, relaxation exercises and much more. Often the clients lack human connection; the students created a client experience that shows respect for the clients, treating them as the person they are.