This Aug. was my first mission trip to Guatemala with Bosta Costa Mission team from North Carolina. I saw with my own eyes what great need there is. Each team member served with compassion & just want to do more as the need is great. All 5 missions we participated in were service projects that honored our savior, Jesus Christ by showing love to our fellowman.
Having served twice with stove installation in Xojola I can personally tell you this is a staight to the "those in need" organization. All those that lead the Boca Costa could be sitting in the comfort of their homes in some resort but instead dedicate their lives to helping others. May God bless their work and generosity.
I have had the opportunity to serve with several different organizations and am very happy to recommend Boca Costa. Both my husband and I have been involved with this organization and have been blessed and thankful for the work that Jim and Dianne do daily for the people of Guatemala.
We look forward to working with them again...soon!
My first exposure to Boca Costa Medical Mission occurred in August of 2017. Up until this trip, most of my international mission work has been concentrated in Africa around an orphan empowerment project. This was my first experience in Guatemala, as well as my first medical mission endeavor. Having recently completed a Masters in Public Health, I assure you, I still had my program evaluation hat on while there! I can truly say that the work being done at Boca Costa Medical Mission fills a vital gap in providing healthcare to an area of great need. In addition to healthcare, Jim and Dianne Thompson along with Dr. Sergio and staff are working to build better health through prevention programs. Instead of just continuing to treat the high level of respiratory issues in the clinic, teams are brought in to install better ventilated stoves in the homes. This simple solution has already reduced clinic visits for respiratory issues, particularly in children. Anyone attempting to reduce poverty knows the key is education, especially for girls. This group has worked diligently to advocate for education and made great strides in spite of a culture that traditionally has not valued education for girls. As global health providers we always want to deliver culturally competent services, we want to do “with” and not “to” people. This program operates way beyond cultural competence; the people served have a deep trust and admiration for the staff of Boca Costa Medical Mission. From my experience, monetary donations are utilized in the best way to benefit the people. If you are looking to travel and serve there, the program is designed well and you will have wonderful, caring interpreters. I am grateful for people like Jim and Dianne Thompson who continue to serve in places that others will never go. It was a privilege to serve and I cannot wait to return!
Melissa Harrell, Goldsboro, North Carolina
It has once again been my privilege to participate in the work of the Boca Costa Medical Mission in Guatemala. The effect of this organization in meeting the needs of the indigenous Mayan people of this area is phenomenal. This was my 7th trip and I've seen such improvement in the lives of these people thanks to the work of the staff of Boca Costa Medical Mission. You can clearly and measurably see the better health of the people. The way in which services are provided is a model for great mission work, too! Jim and Dianne Thompson have worked to develop leadership within the local people for this project and the people served have an investment in it as well. They pay a very small price for clinic visits, but it gives them dignity in receiving these services. They carry all the materials for a new, vented, energy-efficient stove to be installed in their homes from the clinic site (no small feat in that terrain), and local members of the staff have been trained as nurses and health promoters. This is an amazing mission project and I'm so delighted to be able to be supportive in any way possible.
I had the privilege of spending time at Boca Costa Medical Mission again in August. The work that they do is amazing and vital to the people of that region. The difference in the health of the people who come to the clinic is obviously improving in the 4 years I've been working with Boca Costa. They are an excellent organization and work to improve all aspects of the health of the people they serve.
After three visits to Guatemala to work with Boca Costa Medical Mission, I am still awe struck at the hard work and dedication this organization provides for the people of Guatemala. I have seen first hand that Jim and Diane Thompson's efforts are making a huge impact on the lives of the people they touch with BCMM. I have been a registered nurse for 20 years and didn't understand the basic needs of the people living in Guatemala until I first visited in 2015. Jim and Diane are helping these hard working, dedicated people become healthier one life at a time. Their continued efforts to assist with much needed vitamins and medications, assistance with surgical cost and helping to educate on nutrition and diet are reaching farther and farther each year. I am amazed every time we ride up to Xojola on our bus and see the hundreds of people awaiting our arrival. Their faces light up at the site of much needed healthcare in their village. That's the moment I knew this organization was one of the best. The tireless efforts of the team to have all patients seen and given essential medications was a truly overwhelming feeling. The first two days in the village, tears would stream down my face when I thought about two people leaving their home in the US to come to Guatemala to make an impact on as many as possible. Jim and Diane's mission has changed my life forever and I look forward to being a part of this compassionate, efficient, life changing organization's mission in making the lives of the Guatemalan people better for a long time.
am pleased to share my enthusiasm for the Boca Costa Medical Mission (BCMM) in Guatemala. I volunteered twice with a team from Canajoharie, NY. The work was arduous but the gratitude from local indigenous folks was profound, as was their need for care.
Dianne and Jim Thompson, founders and directors of the BCMM, have constantly demonstrated complete dedication since 2003, to provide consistently available medical services (in their two clinics and one hospital) to the impoverished region of western Guatemala where there previously was no care for those remote highland villages. Their determination and energy has been a testament to the Mission's success.
My experiences there were so poignant that I began speaking of it to everyone I knew. One friend, who has never been to Guatemala, was so moved that he donated twice, making it possible to initiate regular dental services. And I now work with a Guatemalan colleague for his non-governmental organization which initiates community projects to enhance education and economic development in indigenous communities near Antigua.
I hope reviewers of the Boca Costa Medical Mission will be as impressed as I, and many like me, in giving it the highest accolades that it deserves.
Ilse Funk, MPA, BSN, RN
I have worked in the Boca Costa medical mission clinics for about 10 years. The needs of indigent villagers are met with a minimum of administrative expense. Almost all finances go directly to help the patients in the clinic by supporting physicians, nurses, pharmacy assistants, and locally trained physician assistants. I would highly recommend this organization for anyone looking for a hands on non-profit in a third world country.
Thank you so much for writing.
hola, hola... es un gran gusto para mi contar mi pequeña historia. la organización de Boca Costa, Guatemala, es de gran bendición para mi familia y para mi comunidad, a ayudado a muchas personas con jornadas medicas, medicinas, consultas y mas, gracias a ello persona de muy escasos recurso han podido obtener una revisión medica... niños han resibido atención con mucho cariño y amor al trabajo de ayudar, también a mi hermana menor la ayudaron en un tratamiento donde ella estaba muy critica en su enfermedad y gracias a Dios por la organización de Boca Costa, Guatemala y Dianne Thompson mi hermana hoy ya tiene 9 años de edad y esta mucho mejor ... me siento genial..... y deseo que sigan apoyando cada dia mas, por que hay muchas personas que necesitamos apoyo.. que Dios los bendiga.
Dr Roger Tims wrote,
In 2005 a diversified project group went to Guatemala to provide outpatient medical care, help w construction and have an exuberant children's program. Upon return the members noted that the work of Boca Costa and Jim and Dianne Thompson was so vital that a group has returned to work on an annual basis. The Thompson's persisted in spite of many difficulties and frustrations. In addition they completed clean water projects which had a profound and highly visible improvement in the health and growth of the children especially . Also they have built schools and supported extended education. Initially there were no sources for surgery for patients in need . Ultimately they discovered The Hospital Santa Fe de Cristo and Dr. Sergio Castillo. Dr. Castillo had left his residency program and a potentially very successful OB-Gyn practice to create the Hospital Santa Fe. The Thompsons and he were able to form a supportive relationship. The people they serve are the indigenous Maya who are the poorest and most abandoned people in Central America. The Thompson's have established continuing and sustaining clinic's and have trained the Maya and ladinos to develop the skills to maintain the existing clinics. Whether in the clinics, the hospital or water and construction projects, they have saved lives, improved overall health and opportunity for a needy people. I have made 5 return trips and it is amazing to see the changes. Boca Costa Medical Mission is a great non-profit organization , they have done so much for so many, with so little resources. Boca Costa deserves any acclamation or support your organization can give. Roger Tims
I have been part of the Boca Costa Medical Mission since it first arrived in Guatemala in 2003. Liitle did they know 11 years later they would be the go to clinics in this jungle area. The inhabitants, displaced Maya, work seasonally in sugar cane and coffee fincas. Cultural differences, language barriers, and poverty prevented their access to medical care in nearby towns. Dilapidated attempts at centers for health were overgrown with tropical plants or overtaken by the bat population. The Government of Guatemala was unable and in some cases unwilling to sustain and staff these modest buildings. Overpopulated and without any substantial infrastructur, the BCMM has grown and provides basic needs medical care to thousands each year. This is accomplished by maintaining 2 clinics that are staffed by local trained nurses and health promoters from the area. They are are supported by this non profit organization opening their doors 10 days per month. They also host medical and construction teams. Once basic needs are met such analgesics, creams etc are provided like those you are able to get at your local pharmacy and anitiparasitic treatment (deworming) is offered, referrals and financial aid is provided to the clients who need to go to the larger towns nearby to see doctors, get diagnosis, and even receive surgery. Not only have cultural, language and barriers of poverty been overcome but the next generation of this area is learning to live within and without their local villages. In 2003 most patients who visited the clinic had never been outside their village. Now they are aware of services in nearby towns and all the way to Guatemala City. A 14 year old girl came with her newborn niece, Catarina. The infant feeding program was established as Catarinas' mother died during childbirth. Assistance for local midwives became part of the program too. A 40 year old with a benign abdominal mass weighing almost 11 pounds was one of their first surgical emergencies. All children and adults with cleft lip and pallet have been served and now only the newborn with this congenital abnormality have the need. Parents know they can come straight to the clinic and they will be referred to other non profit or private intituitons and they need not fear social stigma or financial inability to pay for basic globally available health care. School antiparasitic programs with teachers documenting change of entire class behavior after deworming has led to deworming programs partnering in theory with the WHO and the Global Network of Neglected Tropical Diseases. To continue bringing the third world Boca Costa de Solola up to 21st century global health standards help them. If you've been there write a review.
Jim and Dianne Thompson have changed the lives of many people in Guatemala. They formed a non profit called Boca Costa Medical Missions, and have dedicated their lives to having a mission of faith and love. They have served, sponsored many children and families, gave many jobs to locals and made several clinics self sufficient with local employees. They have educated new leaders to help coordinate teams coming to serve with Boca Costa. They refer patients for much needed care from rural clinics to higher level of care facilities. They fund raise to keep the Mission sustainable to operate for years to come. I am very blessed to know and to have worked with Jim and Dianne Thompson. Their dedication, faith, and knowledge of the Guatemala country, customs and people, is the biggest reason I will continue to lead teams with Boca Costa knowing that they run a very organized, dependable mission who cares for all people, with no prejudices, and with the best interest of their patients. They are a first class non profit mission, and I am proud to be a part of their team. Anita Gooding Roanoke Va
I have been volunteering with the Boca Costa Medical Mission( Jim and Dianne Thompson) for 5 years,and I have been team leader for two years, and will lead again in 2014. The BCMM serves the indigenous Mayans in Western Guatemala who are some of the poorest people in Central America. This organization has changed the lives of so many people in the Mayan Community...In the past decade they hosted medical, Dental, construction, and stove installation teams.. They have also provided nursing education and training to several by helping local students through Nursing School ...The Mayan villages now have clinics being run by well train medical professionals to help manage and meet the medical needs of the different Mayan villages between teams with little or no cost to those who need the care.Some of their patients cannot get help for many reasons such as transportation, financial, too sick to travel, or the lack of education to know they are very sick and wait until they can no longer travel. I personally was able to go on several trips to homes of patients who were to sick to travel .This was not the first medical mission, I had been on,but it was my first to Guatemala in 2006 to work with Jim & Dianne, I must tell you that this was the most organized, well managed medical mission where you could actually feel and see the love between the missionaries and the patients. I was also amazed by the care the missionaries themselves gave where they were actually working & providing care to the Mayan people....I have NEVER in all my 22+ years of Nursing witnessed the appreciation and the love from the patients and staff that I observed when I worked with them. I was grateful to be part of their team to help provide the wonderful care they gave each and every patient that came through the clinic doors. I also witnessed how the people trusted them and was very happy to be taken care of while I worked with my team...I felt God blessed me with the skills and knowledge to be able to volunteer. It is now MY passion to continue to lead teams under the supervision of BCMM and encourage all of my family, friends, church family to volunteer as well. Most of our teams have 20+ volunteers and I have many friends in the medical field who have been with BCMM more than one time, and continue to support our medical mission if they cannot go. The villages served by this organization have benefited tremendously. BCMM ( Jim & Dianne Thompson) are a blessing to so many Guatemalans but also to those who volunteer. I would like to also acknowledge that they use local people who have now become part of the BCMM family. They are very kind, trustworthy, and professional., as they provide translating services that make our jobs of caring for the many people we see so much easier and we have so much fun getting to know each and everyone of them. Our transportation services and our bus driver is also a very important part of our team when we serve with BCMM. He provides us with safe travel and wonderful sight seeing information and he is very knowledgeable of his country, the people and places we get to visit. I have NEVER in all my years of serving with BCMM had any safety concerns for myself or the teams. Jim & Dianne's never ending hard work and dedication to Boca Costa Medical Mission is why MY passion is to lead teams to Guatemala, help provide the medical and dental care necessary to make their world a better place. I want to share our mission of Gods love and teaching to each and every person we have met and cared for in Guatemala who have touched and changed our lives.
BCMM is in my heart and in all Guatemalans heart too, I've been able to learn so much about this NGO and how they work that I can assure that they are so important for the country and for the people in it. I've met a lot of people with the biggest hearts and kindest souls, I'm truly happy and thankful that I had the blessing to work with them and learn of them, it has been the best experience of my life. When you see the people of the villages you can see the love, admiration and gratitude in their eyes towards the Boca Costa Medical Mission teams.
I fell in love with the Boca Costa Medical Mission in Guatemala in 2013 when I went as a nurse to work in their clinics for the indigent Mayan people of Guatemala. I returned in 2014 and 2016 and I plan to return in the future. Jim and Dianne the founders of this nonprofit have established a relationship with the Guatemalan people based on trust and compassion. They did not want a mission that would offer a temporary solution to the people's problems. Their hope was to teach the people how to be able to be more self sufficient. They have provided partnered with a local Guatemalan doctor who has chosen to work with in the jungle instead of the city. In one village they have provided a scholarship to train a local nurse. In 2016 our team also helped to build vented cook stoves in order to improve living standards. They worked with local Guatemalans who will maintain the stoves after the team is gone. Thank you BCMM for all you do for the Guatemalan people!
I met the founders of Boca Costa in 2004 while on mission with another group. I became very interested in their work & went to the jungle and worked in the clinic with them. It amazed me how many people were there and how far they had walked to get there. Every patient is treated medically with dignity and respect
BCMM has deeply enriched the lives of the Guatemalan people while providing care they would not otherwise have
They are passionate about serving the people as well as educating them in preventative health measures.
BCMM has established a network of medical clinics in Guatemala that serves thousands who would not have medical care without them.
My absolute favorite non profit
I am a physician from New Hampshire. Two years ago, I participated in a medical mission with some colleagues. We worked with BCMM, spending a week with them in Xojola and San Antonio. I had participated in one other mission previously and I can say that this was well-coordinated and we felt well supported. In June of 2016, I was able to lead a team , working again with BCMM. I was impressed with how much progress they had made in Xojola, not just with staffing but also with upgrades to the clinic itself. Their in country coordinator, Maria, is excellent! The addition of Dr. Sergio as a regular medical provider and a dentist (who we unfortunately did not meet) has really allowed BCMM to expand their presence in the community. I was also impressed with their strategic plan and ability to implement it.
We are already planning a return visit next year and will add stove installation as well.
This is a terrific group of people who are truly dedicated to serving the people in Xojola and the surrounding area.
I've been able to work with Boca costa as an English -Spanish translator and the work that the organization does is just amazing, Boca costa has the ability to really help people out, and to give patients the follow up they need. And they also help out people with the stove projects reducing lungs diseases. I've seen how other organizations work but not one can be compared to Boca costa. It truly is one Of the best organizations because it really really helps people. And Guatemalans are very thankful for their help. You can go if you have a simple cold or if you need an operation, Boca costa will help you out even if you don't have the economic resources. There's nothing compared to that. Thank you so much for your help
BCMM is professional and fully understands the needs of the amazing people in the jungle of Guatemala. They have established a respect and trust from the locals that is very hard to earn. Not only are they making a huge difference medically in the lives of their communities but recognize the need for the Onil Stoves to help with lung issues in both adults and children as well as watery eyes and difficulty sleeping as a result. Part of their mission is for the groups who come to have the opportunity to be a part of the community and establish a connection while keeping safety as a priority. I've been working with BCMM for several years and have attended multiple trips and have enjoyed every one. I always feel the people of Gatemalal send me back to the US with so much joy, of which I am extremely grateful, that each trip is better than the last. BCMM has an amazing team of dedicated professionals helping to plan each team based on the specific groups interest and including accommodations, meals, interpreters, clinic staff to name a few. Well done BCMM!
I went on my first foreign mission to Guatemala in August of this year. I worked with a team teaching Bible School to children. It was a life changing experience for me. The children were so open and loving that your heart just goes out to them. We gave out shoes and after we had no more to give, the children still ask for them. The group I was with all did a great job in a lot of different areas. It was a bonding experience for the team as we shared with the Mayan and Spanish people.
I again had a great experience serving this group. It is obvious the effect they have had in the remote area of Guatemala. After 5 years the improvement in the health is measurable. Great job Boca Costa!
I have worked with Boca Costa for the last three years. They serve the Mayan population of Guatemala health care. Diane and Jim Thompson are two of the most giving organizers of a non profit that I have ever worked with. They coordinate medical personnel to visit the 4 clinics in the area near Mazatango. They have also worked to have people from the area trained in nursing to carry on with care between the teams. Currently they are working on a new facility to provide care. There is no finer non profit out there in my eyes!