DLP Serves through the Generosity of Cindy Lou Lapp
by Jenn LoConte
For Cindy Lou Lapp, Real Estate Specialist with DLP Realty, traveling to Guatemala each year in order to help others is a privilege. She’s traveled to the small town of Chiquimula four out of the last five years and has no plans to stop anytime soon.
Through a partnership with Lancaster County Bible Church and Kairos Ministry, volunteers organize medical clinics for rural mountain communities, spending a week with the people of Guatemala who have no access to healthcare. Cindy, who originally signed up with a friend that also volunteers, was a bit reluctant since she had no medical background. Cindy comments, “I quickly learned that you don’t need to have medical experience to make a difference. Assisting as a helper, setting up medical stations, registering patients, even playing with the children was much needed in order for the medical personnel to be able to do their job.”
Each summer, Cindy makes the five hour flight, leaving her family and friends, to travel to a third world country, an important part of this story. Chiquimula is the small town that she travels to, but a 45-minute van ride up a remote mountain is where the life-changing work happens. The volunteers set up approximately four medical stations, one dental station, and one pharmacy located inside a rural school building. There is no electricity, limited running water, and homes consist of a thatched-roof hut with a dirt floor. The group stays for four days, open for business from 9 a.m. to around 5 p.m., as long as the vans are packed up and ready to make the drive back down the mountain, since it’s pitch black once the sun goes down. This past July, it was estimated that the group helped around 659 men, women, and children in just four days!
Cindy says that volunteering in Guatemala is a life-changing experience, significantly putting things into perspective. She says, “These are people who are worried about finding their next meal and clean water. They don’t have access to the most basic of needs, things that we take for granted in the modern world.” For many patients, this is the only time they get to see a medical doctor or dentist. Each villager is given a bag filled with toiletries – vitamins, soap, toothbrush, and toothpaste. She shared that there are a host of medical issues and many people need knee injections from constantly walking on rough terrain with non-supportive shoes.
A specific family that Cindy made a connection with was a mom and her two teenage children who lived in one of the remote villages. She had visited their hut on a house call, as the mother was sick and could no longer move or walk. The inside of the home consisted of a cot or two, a dirt floor, and a concrete square in the middle of the floor used for cooking. Since the mother could no longer work, the children had to quit school in order to secure food each day. Last year, Cindy made the life-changing decision to fund the children, through Kairos Ministry, so that they would have food, daily. In exchange for her gift, the children had to continue attending school in order for them to finish their education and have hope for a future different from the only one they have ever known.
Cindy continues to receive updates on the family she is sponsoring, through Kairos. Both are doing excellent in school. She continues, “The children who live here don’t think about their future or have any sense of improving their surroundings. I wanted to give the family hope for a better future.”
Don Wenner, founder and CEO of DLP Real Estate Capital comments, “Cindy says it’s a privilege to volunteer there. We are also privileged to have Cindy on our team, a team she’s been with since our early days. She is truly an example of Living Fully and we look forward to sponsoring her each year as she travels to make a difference in others’ lives.“
Cindy’s next trip won’t be until July 2020. If you’d like to support her in and help the people of Guatemala, visit the Kairos site.