From October 7 to 13, the Boulder Mante Sister City committee hosted two guests from its corresponding committee in Mante, Mexico. One of the guests was Dr. Jose Guillermo Sainz, a family doctor and the other was Luis Alberto Cruz, an architect and past president of the Mante Rotary Club.
The purpose of their visit was to reignite the sister city relationship in Mante by taking back stories and video about Boulder to share with the residents of Mante.
Alberto and Guillermo said that the door is now open for Boulderites to return to Mante. The height of the criminal activity in Mante occurred about five years ago, which caused the Boulder Community Hospital to cancel its annual medical campaign. For the last two years, however, conditions have improved dramatically. People now enjoy normal routines including shopping, visiting and going to events in the evening. As an example of current conditions, it was noted that Rotary had hosted some 18 youth exchange students in recent years with no safety issues. Guillermo was particularly interested in having guests return to Mante for fishing, especially fishing for black bass. Alberto and Guillermo agree that while Mante is not paradise, it’s as safe as any place in Mexico these days.
During their stay the following topics were discussed:
- A reigniting of the teacher exchange between our two communities. It was noted that several teachers still remain in touch by email
- Our Mante guests viewed the “city in a suitcase” at the Boulder History Museum which has many items from Mexico that can be loaned out to student and scouting groups who wish to learn about Mante. Alberto and Guillermo are interested in creating a “city in a suitcase” about Boulder which could be circulated in Mante.
- Guillermo reported that the dental equipment purchased by Boulder resident donations and a grant from Rotary have been incorporated into service in Mante and are valuable tools for dentistry in Mante.
- The Mante guests were introduced at Boulder Rotary, where that club was reminded of the many Rotary grants that had been completed to equip the hospital, rehab facilities and clinics in Mante. The Boulder Club was reminded that they are sister clubs with Mante Rotary.
- Our Mante guests were introduced to Dr. Rob Vissers, the new CEO of Boulder Community Health. A discussion followed about smaller medical teams returning to Mante and the possible assistance Boulder Community Health might provide in equipping the new rehab facility in Mante. This could possibly be in connection with Project Cure.
- The Mante guests expressed an interest in the short term for help with speech therapy and audiology screening.
As a result of this visit, it seems possible for a small delegation from Boulder to visit Mante in the near future for assessment and reconnection of our two committees and communities.
A special thanks to Elfa Rodriguez for her hosting of our visitors throughout their six day visit to Boulder.