You have just 1 week. That is it. You just can’t waste one second while you are on a mission. If you feel a little under the weather you take an IV and keep working. If you have a kidney stone you get up at 5am, have a medical procedure and get back in the game. (Yep that really happened today.) There is so little time and so much care to give the volunteers need to make each minute count and they do.
I am often asked when I return from a mission – what is your day like? I thought I would share with you what a typical day is like here in India.
It’s Monday! I will be honest with you if I was back in the states I might grumble a little about the start to another long work week. Email, voicemail, text messages, smoke signals it seems we are using any method of communication we can to do the work we do when we are not on a mission. When you are on a mission a Monday means there is excitement that now is the time patients get the care they have waited so long to receive. Months of planning, miles of travel, hundreds of communications back and forth with our host country and Monday is the day when the real work ...
We have made it to India and it has begun. Air travel to Newark, flight to Delhi, a couple of hours of rest, a quick flight to Bhopal and then a short bus ride to the Sewa Eye Hospital and after 28 hours of travel time it’s time to do what we came to do. That is the way it is on a mission. It sounds simple enough and for this group of volunteers it seems to be second nature to travel half way around the world and have the energy to get a mission up and going quickly.
Day 1 of any mission is filled with feelings of exhaustion, excitement, joy, anticipation ...
On February 17 - 27th, 2017 26 volunteers will be headed to Bhopal, India for our second medical mission to India.
How the mission got started:
Each of our missions come through connections made with people across the world with the same mission, Health for the World.
The India mission came to Medical Missions Foundation through Drs. Pratibha and Narendra Khare and their
contacts in Bhopal. Pratibha, a retired anesthesiologist and two time Uganda mission participant, and her husband Narendra, a practicing urologist, are both from India and understand ...
I went to India to learn what I should have already known. OK, that probably seems like an odd way to start the final blog entry about a medical mission trip but I think I can explain.
This inaugural mission to India is finished and all 15 members are now back at home. I know I went off line for a few days but as you travel you don’t always have the best access to internet and a quiet place to write. You would think an overnight train from Bhopal to Agra would give you all the inspiration one would need to complete a blog entry but the top bunk on a night ...
Today I would like to share with you some of the photos that were taken around the hospital. The patients and visitors to the hospital would either ask to have their picture taken or wanted to take a photo with one of the mission volunteers.
They are a kind and beautiful people. I hope you enjoy this small sampling. There will be more blog posts as well as Facebook photos and postings on the way.
Photos courtesy of George Shadid.
I have only spent a short amount of this blog telling you about the technical side of this mission. These trips can be very emotional as we have traveled half way around the world and your senses are at the highest they may have ever been so I like to talk about the people, the culture and our team. As I keep in touch with friends and family back home I get asked a lot about “what is it like there?” So today I would like to tell you a little bit about what our medical team sees daily as they do their amazing work.
You know we have been in the Sewa Eye ...
The Indian people have been taught whether someone is rich or poor, good or bad, if you are going to serve them you serve them to the very best of your ability. I asked today why everyone here takes such good care of us. It’s not just one, but everyone we come in contact with; they are so willing to make sure we have what we need. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner someone is right there to make sure we have enough. No sooner has someone asked for something needed to do their work than it appears. If we have a question about something, they have figured out the solution almost ...
There is wording on MedicalMissionsFoundation.org that says, “In a world that is divided by health inequalities, Medical Missions Foundation operates with a clear vision of a better tomorrow, a strong dose of determination and the hard work of many people to ease suffering and save lives.” It is the line, “determination and the hard work of many people” that has been rolling around in my mind today.
I have the opportunity in my position on this mission to bounce around to many different areas. One minute I am checking out the surroundings just ...
This week’s home for our medical work in Bhopal is the Sewa Sadan Eye Hospital Trust. This hospital came into existence in 1987 due to the Bhopal Gas tragedy of 1984. I read a lot about that tragedy before we left and if you get a chance do a quick search to understand the amount of suffering and loss from that tragedy. The hospital has been a gift to this area but my writing today isn’t going to focus on the history of the hospital, but rather on the Indian and Medical Missions Foundation volunteers that give their time to Sewa.
Seva, or Sewa as the ...