By Melony Teague
Your gifts in action.
What if you were able to see the impact that sponsored surgery and care of children with disabilities has made in the lives of those served by EMAS Vietnam’s Medical Aid for Vietnam program? Through the eyes of Dr. Pete Greidanus and Neveah Dumas, who served in February 2015 in South Central Vietnam, we have a first-hand glimpse of the difference your support is making to patients in need of sponsored cardiac surgery as well as patients with disabilities.
Neveah Dumas said,
“Bette Greidanus and I noticed children in the crowd waiting to get treated. We gathered all the children from the crowd and sat them down. We handed out a tooth brush with tooth paste on it and a cup of water to each of them. We taught with the help of a translator. I started brushing my teeth to demonstrate. The kids were hesitant at first and needed some encouragement.”
This may seem like an insignificant thing, but these kids had never brushed their teeth in their lives. Neveah explained,
“ I am not a dentist—but if they just learned to brush their teeth twice a day—that could reduce the amount of teeth they would have to get pulled out in their lifetime by half, if not more.”
Neveah helping a young girl pick out her first toothbrush
Dr. Pete Greidanus is a family Doctor who was part of the team that travelled by bus to clinics set us in schools and community health clinic facilities in rural villages. In their downtime they visited Pediatric Hospital.
“We saw many children there, some pre-op, some just post-op in recovery in the NICU, or the ICU, and on a step down ward awaiting discharge. In this hospital 100 children from all over Vietnam receive cardiovascular surgery for free every year, sponsored by the EMAS’ “Medical Aid for Vietnam” mission”
The next mission trip is planned for July 16 ‒ 31st, 2016. Donations to EMAS Medical Aid for Vietnam would help provide this urgently needed heart surgery which costs around $2,500 per child. Adults needing cataract surgery are also helped at the cost of $300.
Dr Greidanus was greatly moved when invited to meet some post-op heart surgery children and their parents. These children had been home for six months or more. Most now had a healthy skin color, and no murmur, or a mild residual murmur. The parents were very grateful! They met with some developmentally delayed children and their parents.
A young patient waiting with her father for examination after heart surgery
Dr. Greidanus said,
“The Sisters minister to these children also, and in Christian love, teach them songs and life skills, as well as train them in skills that may help them make some money. Watching them sing and dance joyfully and without inhibitions, was beautiful, and brought tears to my eyes. Our work in the clinics was valuable and very good. However, facilitating and supporting the work of the Sisters, especially their work with the congenital heart defect and Down’s Syndrome children, was for me, the greater good of this mission. This song says it well: “It was there, there among the weakest, I saw Jesus.”
Hearts are being touched and repaired thanks to your generosity!
* I Saw Jesus – Words and Music by Ali Matthews 2010,/small>
Help us raise funds to provide more surgeries for those who need them in Vietnam:
• $300 funds one cataract surgery
• $500 covers one-fifth of the cost of a heart surgery for one child
• $2500 covers the entire cost of a heart surgery for one child
Find out more about our EMAS Vietnam Team