By Barbara Caballero
The House of Kindness is one of the first hospices in Argentina and since May 2001 it has been in charge of housing those people who are experiencing a terminal illness and need a place to spend their last days of life. Nurses, social workers and 150 volunteers work there who perform various tasks ranging from cleaning to keep the place in excellent condition to everything related to the care of the people who house there.
This year it was awarded the highest distinction granted by the Government of Córdoba to local referents for projecting different values with their activities. The House of Kindness received the Jerónimo de la Gente award, thanks to the vote of the people of Córdoba.
In dialogue with Channel C we spoke with Damián Martínez, deputy director of La Casa de la Kindness, who has been working as a caretaker for twenty years. “People do not come to the House of Kindness to die, but we accompany them to live until the end”Damien expresses.
“We receive terminal patients and in some cases chronically ill patients until they can fend for themselves. Here we do not carry out any type of medical treatment, they are given some pain medication that is prescribed by their doctors,” Martínez tells us about to the work they do at La Casa de la Kindness. And he adds, “in addition to caring for these people, we accompany their families and help them so that they can endure what is going to happen.”
Regarding how they face the costs required to keep the house in good condition and the people who live there, Martínez explains that the house depends on the Fundación Manos Abiertas and that all expenses can be covered thanks to private contributions and the work of volunteers. “We receive donations, but everything we do we do on our own,” she says.
Martínez assures that it is a very rewarding job and that what he receives from these people is more than what he gives them. “We become attached, we have the premise that we must form bonds with people even when we know what is going to happen to them. We are training ourselves all the time to overcome these situations. We are like their relatives, we listen to them, we take care of them, we try to that they spend their last days in the best way”.
“We are not a machine, we feel, there is a very human side. Death is an event as important as a birth, we take care of their burial and that they are fired with the respect they deserve,” says the vice director.
“The pandemic was very difficult for us, but we did everything possible so that our patients do not die alone. We made it possible for them to come and say goodbye to their loved ones, with all the protocols so that no one gets infected. People when they leave he is afraid of dying, and he wants to hold someone’s hand”.
To help the House of Kindness you can bring your donations to 581 Brasil Street, Barrio Güemes or call the following phone number 4692426. You can also become a volunteer by going to the Foundation page https://www.manosabiertas.org.ar/ volunteering/.