One of the most difficult things for Susanna, beginning to serve in Cristo Rey, was when a mother would bring a little girl for nutritional help and then recount how she wouldn’t eat ever since her uncle abused her sexually. Or when a mother wanted a sleep aid for the 5-year-old boy who suffered horrible nightmares after seeing his teacher stabbed to death by her ex-husband in the school’s gate. These were situations far beyond what a nurse was equipped to handle. Our community is extremely poor and has high rates of domestic violence, drug use, alcoholism, gangs, and abuse of every kind.

Adriana is a licensed psychologist but what stands out most about her is the love she has for Christ and the beautiful heart she has to minister to the patients that God brings her. She uses faith and Scripture in her compassionate counseling as well as her professional training, all tools to heal and help our community. Her case load includes abuse in every sense, addictions, depression, trauma, grief and more. She is a critical component of our health team supplementing the medical attention offered by the doctors.

Adriana (white coat) leading the monthly parent’s session

Another critical role Adriana fills is in leading the monthly training sessions for parents with underweight children in our nutrition program. She teaches them about many psycho-social issues impacting their relationships with their children and the children’s growth and development. Her engaging, non-judgmental way of interacting has earned the respect and trust of her patients.