Friday, July 05, 2013

Goodies and Breast Pumps...

I know, I know, it's only July, but when people come with so many gifts, it feels a little like Christmas. Friends of mine who used to live here sent me an email a few weeks ago  to let me know they were coming and  did I need them to bring anything. Well, I knew I needed a bunch of C batteries for the otoscopes at the hospital and I always 'need' chocolate. Slowly the list grew. I actually forgot what I requested and was thrilled to see the goodies - M&Ms, granola bars (including chocolate chip), chocolate chips, hot chocolate, smoked almonds, baking pans and tortillas. Awesome. And then of course, the peptobismol tablets which are useful here when stomachs can get a bit dodgy, and yes, a breast pump - two actually. 

A breast pump is probably the most bizarre thing I have requested and it might be even more bizarre that I'm pretty excited about it. Do you know why? It means that Kumba can now use a pump to express breast milk in order to feed her 11 day old baby girl who was born with a cleft lip and palate. This will make Kumba's daily life a bit easier and hopefully it means that this little girl will be exclusively breast fed so that she will be strong for surgery in about 6 months time. Kumba is dedicated already and I am happy to be able to make things a little easier for her. It's tough enough in Sierra Leone to be mothering a baby with a deformity so any help is welcome. Thanks Marty for bringing this out for Kumba! Here's to the growth of her little one and more zeal for Kumba.

Willing & Abel Medical Board...

I accepted the invitation to be on the Willing and Abel Medical Board. I will be one of a team of medics who will review potential cases from various countries for surgery and make medical recommendations to the W&A trustees. I'm excited to be a part of W&A more formally and to continue helping children in developing countries who require specialist surgery. I see a number of children at the hospital that struggle to get the surgery they need and it's great to know that W&A can help. 

Children that I have helped with the assistance of W&A to date are children like Namina (cancrum oris, needing multiple reconstructive surgeries on the Mercy Ship), Junior (cleft lip and palate) and some of the hydrocephalus cases I sent to Guinea for shunting. Up until now, I've been able to take most of the children to the Africa Mercy for surgery and so the costs have mainly been related to border crossings, documentation for the vehicle, transport costs, food, etc. With the Africa Mercy going to Congo for the next outreach, I may need to look at other options. Praying that God will direct. Junior will need a palate repair towards the end of the year/early next year and I have two new cleft lip/palate cases needing surgery.

I'm pleased to know Abi, who founded W&A, and also Benita, one of the trustees who was in Sierra Leone for a year. It's fun to be collaborating more with friends and helping children at the same time! For more information about Willing and Abel go to:

In the meantime things remain busy with my Welbodi Partnership work at the Children's Hospital and I'm still on the Enable the Children Board of Trustees. Enough to do!

~ Act Justly. Love Mercy. Walk Humbly. micah 6:8 ~