June 2nd

Today part of the group went to the hospital to help them with some teaching and some surgeries. Amanda went and taught some of the nurses in the ICU. While she did that the rest of us went to the operating rooms to start with the surgeries that we had scheduled for the day. It started off with a simple procedure where we put in ear tubes into a little kid, and then our second procedure was a cleaning out of an infected ear. The last surgery we had planned was a 5 hour laryngectomy. It was a great time to learn and to see how things are done here compared to the US.

Today was our last day at the orphanage, and our main goal was to finish the painting project we started several days ago. This consisted of Sammie touching up some of the black paint that was applied yesterday, Andrew and Julius finishing the outside of the fence, Kolesa painting the gate, and me finishing the priming. We were able to finish all of this before lunch. After we ate, we finished painting another part of the fence black. However, we were unable to completely finish the fence because there were some issues in how to handle the neighbor’s landscaping that bordered the back wall. Consequently, this will have to be finished at a later date.

The other exciting activity that occurred at the orphanage today was Marni coming by with the two nurses she has been training to practice hearing tests and to make sure the kids had good hearing. With this, there was only good news. Not only did the nurses do an excellent job (even when Marni was gone for lunch), but all of the kids she tested also had perfect hearing! Furthermore, Marni also picked up some hearing aids to do some testing with them back in the United States with the intent of possibly setting something up in the future to help the people of Tanzania with hearing difficulties.

Tomorrow, part of the medical team will go by Bugando to check on the patients that had surgery over the last few days, and then we will fly back to Kilimanjaro. We will then spend the next two days doing some shopping and getting ready to head home. To say this trip has been an amazing experience would be an understatement.

Well our time at Mwanza is coming to an end.  As I reflect back on all the team has accomplished this last week, I thank God for the many great things that they have done to impact the people of Tanzania.  With the leadership of Julius, my Tanzanian Assistant, the orphanage group accomplished so much.  They worked very hard to get the fence painted and I have heard how wonderful it looks.  I am hoping this gives the children and staff a sense of pride that it looks nice.  This will be an ongoing project for future teams to paint the bottom half of the fence.  The children really enjoyed all the teaching the students did and the time that they spent with the children.  

The medical team has worked very hard and so much has been accomplished.  We had a lot of challenges, but we accomplished so much.  The team did a lot of teaching that was well received by the physicians and residents.  Sarah performed many difficult cases and not with the luxury of all the medical equipment she is used to in the states, but she appreciated what equipment they had and did an awesome job.  Marni took the two nurses that she has been working with all day to the orphanage to perform hearing tests on all the children.  We thought it would be good practice for the nurses to perform tests on some children with normal hearing.  Their long range goals is to do hearing screening with the children in the schools.  Marni was so patient and was an awesome teacher.

Tonight the whole team was invited out for supper by Bungando Hosptial.  The acting Director General of Hospital was present along with all the ENT physicians, residents and nurses on that floor.  What a great time we had and they expressed so much appreciation for what the team did while we were here.  They encouraged us to keep coming back and to keep expanding our services.  I told them that is not what we do for them, but what they do for us.  I learn so much from them.  

I thank God for the blessed team and their warm and caring hearts.  God brought them to serve and that they did.  May God bless them for all of what they have done.  Again thanks to all the donors, we could not have done this without you.  Of course the need for medical equipment and medication is so great and if is getting harder and harder to get donated equipment by companies.  So I hope you will reach out and help us financially so we can continue this great ministry.  

Marni and Sarah leave us tomorrow and head back to the states.  We are sending many prayers for their safe journey.  God bless both of you for all you did to help these poor needy people of Tanzania.  I know all the teaching that you did will remain with them and continue to make changes in their healthcare system.  I hope and pray that you will come again with me.  Karibu Tanzania.  


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