Our History

The Amazon Health Project evolved out of Dr. Jeannette Grauer’s first grassroots initiative, the Amazon Dental Project. Dr. Grauer, a Uruguayan dentist, first visited the Amazon in 2002 as a volunteer dentist with a missionary group. After two years of volunteering with a religious organization, she decided to explore her own vision of creating a grassroots, non-religiously affiliated organization. Thus, in 2004 the Amazon Dental Project was born. The first trips provided dental care to children and preventative healthcare education to remote communities along the Amazon and Napo rivers south of the Amazon city, Iquitos. In the initial five years of the Amazon Dental Project, Dr. Grauer also trained a member of an indigenous community to delivery emergency dental treatments. This training was instrumental in building our organization’s foundation of a sustainable healthcare model.

 

In 2008, Dr. Ricardo E. Rodriguez, a Cuban gastroenterologist, joined the Amazon Dental Project to expand the scope of sustainable healthcare offered. With the expertise of a doctor, dentist, and trained community healthcare provider, our organization was able to begin providing full-scale medical and dental services to both children and adults. During the first two years of our growth we also provided tuition assistance for a local student to attend the Dental University at Iquitos, funded the construction of a sustainable healthcare clinic in an indigenous community (Urco Mirañu), and empowered the same community to decrease its malaria rate from 96% to a single patient.

 

Our rapid expansion led to yet another evolution. In 2010, we received our 501 c-3 status as a non-profit organization and officially became the “Amazon Health Project.” Our new name and clarified vision for the future continues to inspire our work of collaborating with and using sustainable healthcare to support the caregivers of our planet, the indigenous communities of the Peruvian Amazon