WHERE THERE IS NO DENTIST ~ Mission in Uganda by Dr. T.R. Shively
...and about one year ago, her informational e-mail arrived with an inquiry to me.
Dr. T.R. Shively with one of his first Ugandan patients and an interpreter...
First, the Friends of Ruwenzori Mission 2009 was interested in finding a dentist to travel with them to Uganda in February 2009. We electronically discussed this need, the options and right person for this assignment. Karen knew that I'd had experience with this type of health care mission, but since I'd already committed for a mission to Africa (Swaziland) in the fall of 2008, I had no real thoughts of returning to that continent three months later. However, after a few e-mails and a lot of prayers, that person did turn out to be me. Thus, began an intensified study of conditions, language and needs before I left for Swaziland in October 2008 and after I returned.
On January 31, 2009, we [Friends of Ruwenzori Mission 2009] traveled to Uganda. My orientation had been brief by necessity, as I was over 1,000 miles from the rest of the medical team, many of whom resided in California. During the month that I was in Uganda, I had the pleasure of treating patients with a very capable health care team: Delia O'Hara and Ewa Zaborowski. Delia capably handled the pre-op screening, including vitals and health histories, and post-op care and instructions. Ewa served a triple role as a physical therapy expert, dental assistant and sterilization coordinator. Both were superb teammates.
It was a blessing to mentor a young man who had dental technician training. We worked together well at KIDA. This answered my prayers to "teach them how to fish," so that they might realize dental care after I left. In that spirit, I donated several instruments to this man so that he could continue patient care. Also in that same mode, I donated my UV curing light for the dental wing of the future hospital at KIDA.
It was an honor and a privilege to serve the Lord's calling with all my teammates. Certainly, the LORD was with us and guided us in our activities.
Inspiration in Uganda~ St. Stephen's at Kissisi