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Taste of Perú captures hearts through food, music, and profound mission

By Arooj Ashraf, La Prensa Correspondent

Cleveland Clinic and Case Medical School students held a benefit for the Lamay Clinic Project on April 9, 2011 at the Cleveland Clinic’s Lerner Research Institute. More than 150 guests enjoyed the complete experience of Perú through food, cultural music, and folkloric dance performances and bid on 100 silent auction items.

Marcía Salas Dance Group

“We wanted people to experience Perú with the ambiance, because who ever visits does not want to leave,” said Isabel Galvez. A Perúvian Clevelander, she offered to help students organizing the benefit to bring cultural performances to the benefit.

Marcía Salas Dance Group, performed a series of traditional dances from Cusco, Perú. Teresa’s Kitchen tantalized taste buds with delicious cuisine and guest also sampled  Perú’s flag liquor -Pisco Sour, a cocktail mixed with imported Pisco (Perúvian brandy-like clear liquor distillate from grapes),

Nine year old Isabella Moner stole the hearts of the audience members with songs sung in Portuguese, and English and profusely thanked her father Patrick for accompanying her on the guitar. Moner’s mother Katrerina was a member of team of 48 that visited Cusco to help with the Lamay Clinic last year and will return this year with Isabella by her side. “She will be singing to orphans and assisting with the pharmacy,” she said.

Isabella said singing “Over the Rainbow” is one of her most beloved songs that she enjoys sharing with others and is eager to return to Perú to perform and also visit her grandparents.

The Lamay Clinic Project is in its third year and interest has continued to grow. This year more than 74 students, healthcare professionals including physicians, pediatricians, nurses and dentists from Cleveland and around the country will spend six weeks; between May 28 – June 24, 2011, providing critical medical care to remote villages around Cusco.

“Last year we helped more than 1500 patients,” said Satoko Kanahara, a fourth-year medical student at the Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine. She said this year students will focus on training local health care providers in CPR techniques especially for pediatrics. The project is also donating a portable ultrasound machine to the Lamay Clinic.

The project is funded by donations and assisted by the Perúvian Hearts foundation devoted to improving lives of impoverished children in Perú.

Brian J. Smith, Director of Strategic Project Development, Division of Operations at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation predicts the Lamay Project will continue to be a favorite among students as well as staff because it mirrors the core values of the Clinic.

He likened participation in the Project to riding a roller coaster with three possible reactions; never again, fine but what else, or the eager who cannot wait to return again. He said the Clinic’s commitment does not stop at the boundaries of Cleveland, Ohio or event the United States but extends to the global community seeking better health.

“The question you have to ask is – what if this was my family?”

Dr. James B. Young, Executive Dean, Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine, Case Western Reserve University said the project prepares the medical students for a life of service and he is intrigued by the innovative sprit of participants who sought help from physicians in Cleveland to diagnose an ailment via email.

Kanahara said the Project raised $5,000 last year and hopes to surpass that at their year’s benefit. Galvez said medical community in Cleveland has shown tremendous support for the project by donating supplies, and equipment that touch the lives of thousands.

To learn more about the project visit: http://lamayclinic.org/


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Copyright © 1989 to 2011 by [LaPrensa Publications Inc.]. All rights reserved.
Revised: 10/12/11 20:54:29 -0700.





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