Students from the Universidad Adventista del Plata who participated in the Mission Trip, on the Luzeiro boat. [Photo: UAP]

South America

Students from River Plate Adventist University Participate in a Missionary Trip to the Amazon

The university students from Argentina dedicated more than 10 days to serve in one of the most inaccessible communities in Brazil.

Argentina | Oscar González

From February 26 to March 7, 2024, students of Medicine, Nursing, Dentistry, Teaching in Physical Education, Teaching in Initial Education, and a degree in Communication from River Plate Adventist University (Universidad Adventista del Plata - UAP) were part of the group of 28 individuals who entered the middle of nature to serve and provide help to families of six communities settled on the banks of the Negro River, in Amazonas.

The representative group from the university traveled and stayed on a boat, where they fed and rested in typical hammocks, while they sailed to visit the communities. During the ten days that the journey lasted, they carried out visitation activities in the communities, primary health care, the Expo Kids program, games with children, and service work of painting houses. In addition, they held an evangelism service every night to share a hopeful message with the people they had attended or visited during the day.

"Each community was made up of twenty or thirty families," details Pastor Lucas Muñoz, director of Internationalization and coordinator of the Adventist Voluntary Service of the UAP. Furthermore, he adds that the students carried out the visitations, organized in pairs, where they prayed and invited the residents to participate in the evangelism meetings that were scheduled for the nights, with messages prepared for children and adults.

Although the dynamics of the activities were intense, each of the participants agreed that serving in these parts of Brazil was a blessing. "It was a particular and challenging experience," says Johan Mairena, a fourth-year student of the Bachelor's degree in Communication, who adds: "A field of learning that impacted me was learning about other cultures, observing reality and the context that affects them." cope and, in turn, assist these populations with community actions, developed in me a new vision of life.

When asked about an anecdote experienced in this project, Johan responded: "I was able to collaborate and work, shoulder to shoulder, with the advanced UAP Medicine students. These activities, to which I am not used, helped me learn more of these people and appreciate their customs. Seeing people satisfied with many of their needs filled me with satisfaction and gratitude to God."

Dr. Werner Arnolds, director of Academic Assistance Services at the UAP Faculty of Health Sciences, was in charge of tutoring the advanced UAP Medicine students in each of the primary healthcare tasks they performed. in the communities visited.

The mission trip was coordinated between the Northwest Institute of Missions (Instituto de Missões Noroeste), based in Manaus, Brazil; and the university in Argentina. "The Amazon Lifeguard project is a project carried out by the Northwest Institute of Missions of the Seventh-day Adventist Church," explains Pastor Muñoz. This institution offered the logistics and support for the mission trip to develop, visiting riverside populations of the Río Negro, in Amazonas.

This partnership between the Northwest Institute of Missions and the Adventist Voluntary Service aims to motivate young university students to be part of the world of solidarity service, and thus participate in practices to support riverside and indigenous communities in the most inaccessible places in the state of Amazonia.

"We thank God for the excellent opportunity to learn more about the realities of the people in this place, and the service that could be carried out with them," concluded Pastor Muñoz. River Plate Adventist University offers its students a comprehensive, educational experience that is inspired by the values ​​and principles that the institutional worldview supports, namely, that of excellence and service.

The original article was published on the South American Division Spanish website.