Sosúa, Dominican Republic

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New standards of excellence in health care in the Dominican Republic

Plaza de la Salud has new affiliation with Johns Hopkins

The General Hospital Plaza de la Salud in Santo Domingo has announced an affiliation with Johns Hopkins Medicine International (JHI) of Baltimore, Maryland, USA to follow up on Dominican patients. Johns Hopkins experts provide educational and consulting support to the affiliate's clinical and administrative staff to keep them on the cutting-edge of medical research, clinical techniques and equipment, hospital management and health system operations.

West Indies Real Estate also reported some time ago on the opening of a new clinic,   Centro Medico Cabarete, on the north coast of the Dominican Republic, which is serving the population in the Sosua and Cabarete areas and beyond.

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Carl Lewis, Goodwill Ambassador for the UN, visits Dominican Republic

Dominican Republic General Interest - Carl Lewis visit

The United Nations reports on the visit of nine-time Olympic gold medalist and United Nations advocate Carl Lewis to the Dominican Republic and Haiti to meet with national leaders and visit forestry and agricultural projects.

The United States track star, who was designated a Goodwill Ambassador for the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in October 2009, will highlight the International Year of Forests during his stop in the Dominican Republic.

In February the UN kicked off a year-long celebration to raise awareness of the valuable role of forests, on which at least 1.6 billion people depend for their daily livelihoods and subsistence needs.

Mr. Lewis will also spotlight a global campaign by FAO to end hunger known as "The 1billionhungry project," through which people can voice their outrage about world hunger by adding their names to an online petition. The campaign uses a yellow whistle as an icon encouraging people to blow the whistle against this global scourge.

The local visit is coordinated by the UN and the Office of the First Lady Margarita Cedeno de Fernandez, who is also a Goodwill Ambassador for the FAO.

West Indies Real Estate supports three local charities:   AAASIsland Impact Ministries and  Sosua Kids


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Orange backs football in Dominican Republic

Dominican Football Federation

Dominican teams ready to play

Orange Telecom has signed an agreement with the Dominican Football Federation for financial support. Eduardo Valcarcel, spokesman for Orange, said that the alliance has the goal of projecting the Dominican Republic as the leading football (soccer) country in the Caribbean. The Orange funding will go towards training, technical support, equipping, and sponsorship of tournaments. The youth and child tournaments will be known as Orange Cup and will take place throughout 2011.

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West Indies Real Estate Charity sending teams to Haiti

Medical Teams help earthquake victims

Island Impact Ministries, one of West Indies Real Estate's chosen charities, is working hard to help in the wake of the Haitian earthquake, sending in medical and food supplies to aid the survivors.  The charity's founders, Pastors Robert and Kelli Nelson from the United States, were missionaries in Haiti for many years.  Although their work is now mainly in the Dominican Republic, they still have a heart for the Haitian people and are doing what they can in the relief effort. 

If you would like to support their work, please click here.

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CLINI-CLOWNS get a welcome boost

West Indies Real Estate supports



Dominican Republic General Interest

Bebe Schultz handing over the donation to Gerhardt Mulder of CLINI-CLOWNS

In the weeks before Christmas, a lot of interest has been forthcoming about the launch of CLINI-CLOWNS. Bebe Schultz very kindly handed over a considerable donation from the sales made from baking. This was handed over to Gerhardt Mulder at the Jolly Roger restaurant in Sosúa.

Bebe knows of the incredible work done by CLINI-CLOWNS which was first introduced in Holland. She said she welcomed the idea as being so important to so many bedridden and hospitalized children, whilst taking up only a small amount of effort from volunteers to become a Clown for a visit.

"We desperately need your support to make sure this wonderful venture gets going as quickly as possible so we can brighten the days of these wonderful and needy children."

For more information as to how you can help CLINI-CLOWNS or perhaps become one of the volunteers, please contact Gerhardt Mulder on 829 978 5534.

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World Class Medical Services at New Clinic near Sosua

Impressive facilities ready to set a new standard on the north coast of the Dominican Republic

Here are the impressive facilities and services offered at the new Centro Medico Cabarete, which opened its doors just recently to a highly delighted community and West Indies Real Estate team:


West Indies Real Estate congratulates Dr. Robert Spitale and his team for a magnificent achievement and wishes Centro Medico Cabarete every success.

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Press Release: New Medical Centre for Cabarete and Sosua

West Indies Real Estate welcomes new Centre of Excellence on the North Coast

On July 1st 2009 the latest medical Clinic CENTRO MÉDICO CABARETE, opened on the outskirts of Cabarete in the town of Sosúa.
This state of the art  269,000 square feet medical facility is the brain child of Dr. Roberto Spitale.
This is a family project, where you can find Roberto's father, mother, and wife assisting to make things run smoothly in the clinic. Their idea was to provide a medical facility in close proximity to the residents of the Sosúa and Cabarete region and give a more personal service to entire North Coast.
Even so, the process of building the Clinic took a great deal of time and effort for it to come to fruition.
Dr. Spitale, a neurosurgeon, started a Foundation to provide neurological services for people in need.  Unfortunately, due to the complexity of these types of procedures, clinical services were a necessity. This meant that the same patients struggled to find the costs to pay for the hospital accommodation even though his services were free.  The idea of starting his own Clinic would allow him to offer his services to the needy without cost to them.
His Foundation, FINC, is supported by many generous donations from all over the world to ensure he can offer these services.
Now, with his new clinic open for business and already creating a stir amongst the local community, he can offer a full service to all, with the latest equipment and highly trained staff on site 24 hours.
Although the doctors are local, it is possible to find medical staff who can speak a number of languages including German, French, English, and even Czech, which is a great benefit in an area which is one of the main tourist areas of the Caribbean.
The background staff in the clinic amount to around 30 people plus the doctors.
Some specialists are booked by appointment but the Clinic is fully operational Monday to Friday 8am – 6pm, Saturday 8am till midday with General medicine, paediatrics, gynaecology, surgeons and orthopaedics.  The 24 hour emergency rooms are fully manned at all times and, where needed, the hospital can send out its own ambulance.
The hospital, which is still refining its facilities, currently offers:
24 hour lab work, X-ray facilities, Mammogram, Sonagraph, CT scan and Cardiology
There are 2 surgery operating theaters and a neo-natal unit, where the incubators are already filling up with premature babies. There are 22 patient care overnight beds, including private and semi-private 4 rooms, 3 Post –op/ICU for intensive care and emergency observation units.
Some local insurances are covered by this hospital and the ones that are not are being approached at the moment. Of course, if you were to have an emergency, and carry national insurance, you should be reimbursed if services are needed.    International insurance is naturally covered.
The modern and dramatic frontage to the hospital situated on the main highway between Sosúa and Cabarete opens onto a well designed and functional reception where visitors and medical staff come together before entering their individual consulting rooms.  A small cafeteria and children’s play area offers a much more casual feeling to this area, which has none of the older, frightening aspects for those who worry about entering a hospital.
All in all, this impressive landmark is now a very welcome addition for the residents and visitors to the area, where they can feel confident that they will be dealt with by a highly experienced medical team, surrounded by the latest technology.
CMC Centro Médico Cabarete
Carretera Sosúa-Cabarete Km1, Sosúa, Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic
Tel: 809 571 4696    Email: cmc.sosua@gmail.com
Director Dr. Roberto Spitale
Members of West Indies Real Estate have already used the services at the Clinic and can only praise the staff, facilities and treatment at this much needed new facility, which eliminates the need to travel to Puerto Plata or Santiago in an emergency or for more routine health care. 
Congratulations to Dr. Spitale and his team.

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Production work for WAIT UNTIL DARK well underway!

North Coast Players Theater Company


Full scale Model of the Set made by Set Designer - Bruce West

Production meetings well underway for the play WAIT UNTIL DARK due to be performed later this year in Sosua.

 Meetings got underway this week with the Producer, Director and Stage Director together with set and lighting designers and other members of the backstage crew.


The Theater Group which is supporting three Charities this year

Sosua Kids, Island Impact and the Animal Association of Sosua

is being assisted by the kind help of the Amhsamarina Hotel Group who are hosting the Play at their Casa Marina Reef Hotel Amphitheater.

Details of ticket sales will be posted shortly but for more information go to:

www.northcoastplayers.com or call Judith Fox-Hogg (Producer) at West Indies Real Estate on 809.571.2820


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West Indies Real Estate charity meets latest goal

New Clinic Opens


  On 18th February, Island Impact opened its newest clinic, or  “Consultorio Popular”, in Cabarete’s La Cienaga community, home to about 7000 people. There is no health care facility there for the underprivileged.   The clinic building is a former boutique.  Remodeling and equipping the new clinic took about three weeks and about $5000.00 to complete.   The clinic has a waiting area outside under cover, an intake area inside, two fully equipped consultation rooms and a well-stocked pharmacy room.  The first days we opened were very busy.  A team of 16 people from Southampton, NY were there to help us inaugurate the clinic.  The press was also there as well as members of the Health Dept.  We have full permission from Dr. Wady Musa, the Puerta Plata Minister of Health to function as a “Consultorio Popular.”   Included on the church team were an American doctor with 36 yrs. of experience, and the manager and a nurse of the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit of Massachusetts General Hospital, as well as other support staff.   The ministry also employs two talented Dominican doctors who helped the team during the opening days and now work there every Wednesday and Friday afternoons from 2-6PM.  The main clinic in Marantha is open Tuesday and Thursday 2-6PM.   

During the week, Susy Cabrera, our Dominican administrator, organized a team of specialists from Santo Domingo who own equipment such as a sonogram and bone density machine to do a day of testing at the new clinic and a day in the Maranatha clinic. One woman who came for a breast exam was in much fear and apprehension because her mother died of breast cancer recently. She did not want to hear that she might have cancer herself, but eventually got up the nerve to be examined. Her results returned negative for cancer. Hearing the good news, she came out of the exam room in tears because she knew she would survive.   Other patients we examined did not get such good news when nodules or small tumors were discovered.  Fortunately, early detection is a major factor when it comes to cancer survival.  We referred the patients to specialists for further treatment.   It was amazing to see all this and the general consultations happening simultaneously in the new, little clinic which was just an empty building a few weeks prior. All this activity just confirmed for us the great need for a quality clinic in this poor neighborhood.

We returned to Florida on 24/2/09 exhausted but satisfied that what we intended to do, open the new clinic, was accomplished.  The La Cienega clinic opened again without us there on Tuesday 3/3/09 and the people came for their consultation, for which we charged each patient $60 RD.  We have lots of good medicine available in the pharmacy which is included in the consultation price. 

The Fundacion Island Impact Clinic in La Cienaga is located next to the Iglesia de Dios on the Calle Principal.  The main clinic in Maranatha is located on the Calle Principal next to the Iglesia Cristiana 7mo. Refugio.  Please stop by to see the good work going on supported by Dominican businesses such as West Indies Real Estate and Outback Safari.  To see pictures of the new clinic from the beginning go to the website  and follow the links on each page to see the progression updates.  If you care to donate to help us continue this medical ministry to the poor, there is a place on our website to do so.  

Thank you and may God bless you!

Rob & Kelli Nelson

Founders Island Impact Ministries   

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Another Wedding in the West Indies Real Estate Team

Linda Stapleton and Fraidesmin Martinez tie the knot - Caribbean Style

Linda Stapleton, Personal Assistant to Judith Fox-Hogg and  West Indies Team member for the past three and a half years, married Fraidesmin Martinez on Saturday, 6th December.  The couple have been together for almost 4 years.

 The wedding took place at Tropicoco Restaurant in Cabarete and was attended by 24 guests plus the bride and groom.  It was a very international event with the following nationalities represented: Dominican, English, Canadian, American, Columbian, Scottish and Ukrainian.  The Blessing was given by Pastor Jeanne de Tellis of New Life Church in Sosua.



Some of the West Indies Team were there, enjoying themselves - see below.  Left to right, Judith Fox-Hogg and Paul Hogg, joint owners of West Indies Real Estate; Ludmila Esipova, Sales Agent, and friend Tatico; Kenia Velez, Receptionist and Administrative Assistant, and husband, Ruben.


The couple will take their honeymoon in January at Sun Resort and Spa, Cofresi.


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Emergency for West Indies Real Estate Charity

Deadly Flash Flooding in Sosua

This morning, November 1st, 2008, we received a call from our clinic administrator, Susy Cabrera, crying that the entire communities of Villa Maranatha (where our clinic is located) and Sosua Abajo (where she lives)* were caught off guard by a RAGING FLASH FLOOD, some five feet high, yesterday afternoon!  There has never been flooding this extreme in this area.  She said the officials have reported 20 people DEAD.  One child, caught by surprise, was swept away by the river water in the street.

"Our clinic is a disaster" Susy said.  "We lost lots of medicines, our computers, refrigerator for medicines and vaccines, possibly our generator and other medical equipment.  I've never seen anything like it!"  At this point, we estimate damages to be at $3,500-$4,000. 

I (Rob) will return to the mission tomorrow to help get the clinic re-opened.  The thousands of people we regularly diagnose and treat at our clinic need our services now more than ever. 

If you would like to help please click here.

Thank you and may God bless you for standing with us during our time of trouble.

Rob, Kelli and Staff 

Island Impact Ministries


Footnote:  These are predominantly poorer, Dominican areas where land is less expensive and families build their homes in areas which can be vulnerable, often close to rivers.  However, this flash flood was very rare and obviously devastating, also affecting homes a good distance from the river. 

Whilst the other areas of Sosua also suffered heavy rain for almost a week and the streets at the worst times were partially under water, the majority of properties remained well above water level. 




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West Indies Charities

Sosua Kids Express Their Appreciation to West Indies

We want to take the opportunity to express our heart-felt gratitude to West Indies for their generous donation to the Sosúa Kids fund. It arrived at the most opportune moment as we are preparing to begin passing the vouchers next week to our school children so as they can buy their supplies and uniforms. Last year we were able to assist 283 needy public school kids , this year we are over 320 kids and counting..... 
Sosúa Kids association continues to pay the teachers' monthly salaries for a school of about 200 students (across from the Air Force base) that was founded by a religious group (there is no public school in that area) as well as donate towards scholarships for a preschool in Los Castillos. It was over a year ago we began helping a struggling university student from this area studying in Santo Domingo with his living expenses, now there are 3 more university students we help financially on a monthly basis.
With the help of generous donors such as West Indies we have been able to expand our program each year to enable more students to seek an education.  School attendance is required by law, but a uniform is required, not all children are in school for this reason. We hope to be able to continue our growth to give education assistance to as many kids as possible. 
The Sosúa Kids Association
If you would like to learn more about Sosua Kids click here.

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New Park and Bandstand for Sosua

Parque Las Banderas (Flags Park) finally opens in Sosua

After over a year of work and traffic disruptions, this delightful little park was officially opened last Sunday by the Mayor of Sosua, Vladimir Céspedes.  It is located opposite Banco Popular on Calle Alejo Martinez, just a few minutes' walk from the West Indies Sosua Head Office.

Flags of Israel, Germany, UK, Russia, Spain, Canada, Switzerland, Italy, France, Ecuador and Dominican Republic were all hoisted, with the respective anthems of each country being played.  The Park is intended to celebrate the diverse population of Sosua and reflects the national pride of foreigners and Dominicans alike.

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West Indies Real Estate Agent Marries

Veronica Decoto becomes Mrs. Diaz!






West Indies Real Estate agent, Veronica Decoto, married Jonathan Diaz Bencosme in a beautiful oceanside ceremony at La Entrada, Cabrera this weekend.  The couple will make their home in Cabarete, following a honeymoon cruise.

We wish them a lifetime of happiness together.

Veronica has been with West Indies Real Estate for three years.


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British Evening in Sosua

British Residents on the North Coast enjoy the Ambassador's evening

Almost 100 people attended a "British Evening" in Sosua hosted by H.M. British Ambassador, Mr. Ian Worthington OBE, at Sabatini's Restaurant on 11th July.

The event grew out of links forged last year as a result of a talk, organised by West Indies Real Estate, by the Ambassador on the work of the Embassy. 

We would like to thank the Ambassador, all the sponsors of the event and also give special recognition to James Read, who helped enormously with the perfect organisation, with superb support from the staff of Sosua Bay Hotel.

Early talks are already underway with the hope of organising another function on the north coast next year.  If you did not attend, or we may not have your e-mail address, please contact Linda Stapleton at l.stapleton@westindies-realestate.com and we will add you to our contact list.  If you have no e-mail, please let us have a telephone number.

 The Ambassador recommends that all British people living in the Dominican Republic should register with the Embassy in case of emergency.  It is now possible to do this easily online:  https://www.locate.fco.gov.uk/locateportal/

Even if you have registered under the old system it is advisable to register again online.  This information is purely used in case of emergency.

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