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Hello PFAV family and friends!
It’s been four months since we held our seventh annual health camp in Nepal, and life has flown by since then! We’ve got great news to share with you, including the details from our trip this past March. (Hint: It was a big success!)
2019 health camp: the highlights
16 Americans and 20 Nepali doctors and volunteers spent three full days traveling and seeing patients in Dudhekuna, Tanahun, Nepal. In all, we treated 467 people, including 172 women. We performed 157 Pap smears and yielded the following results:
- 59 women (38%) were diagnosed with vaginitis.
- 7 women (5%) were diagnosed with Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID). The global average is below 1%.
- 14 women were diagnosed with uterine, bladder, or rectal prolapse (9%).
- 1 woman was diagnosed with cervical cancer.
- 2 women showed signs of pre-cancer.
All women received multivitamins, and every woman diagnosed with PID or vaginitis was treated at the camp. The women with precancerous results received check-ups in Chitwan, where they were discharged and asked to come back for a follow-up next year. The woman diagnosed with cervical cancer underwent surgery earlier this month and is now recuperating at home. One of our partners from a local NGO accompanied the women to the hospital in Chitwan, and PFAV covered all their medical costs.
226 of our patients were children. All were measured and weighed and received multivitamins, de-worming treatments, and vitamin A. Many showed signs of malnutrition, including several who were severely malnourished. One child had Ricketts (vitamin D deficiency). All mothers were given counseling regarding nutrition and the resources available to them in Nepal for dietary help.
We also treated 50 dental patients for extractions and cleanings. The line was very long, so twenty patients received vouchers for treatment at the local dental clinic.
Reflections from our team
One of our Nepali partners, Krishna, told us that the PFAV health camp “has given positive effect in the health of the women in the area. The doctors gave important information according to their health report by phone call. The people are very happy for the help they received at the camp.”
Kenn Hunter, one of our dentist volunteers, shared that “seeing the joy and excitement of the people at the health camp either in anticipation of being treated or as a result of being treated is the best reminder of why we do what we do.” Though this was Kenn’s first PFAV camp, he has volunteered in Nepal before and added that “every opportunity to be among and to work with the Nepali people is always a great honor for me. Their kindness and warmth is something that pervades every interaction.”
“When I learned about the women’s lives that were saved, it warmed my heart to know the impact that we made,” said Vera Villalvazo, a dental hygienist also joining us on her first PFAV trip.
“This was the best health camp so far,” Kathy and Rene agreed. They founded PFAV in 2014 and have since helmed seven health camps. “Every year we are learning and looking for ways to improve. Our volunteers were all fantastic and hardworking. It is not an easy trip given both the distance and the rough conditions, but everyone knew that they were part of something important.
“We want to thank everyone who was a part of this camp through prayers, donations, and participation. We cannot do this without dedicated people who care.”
Exciting PFAV News
Shree Poudel, the PFAV In-Country Director and great friend, has been given the opportunity to move to the US! He and his wife, Muna, are currently living and working in New York City. Shree has continued to work with us since his move in early June and will always be available to coordinate all of our projects in Nepal.
Ming Maya Lama has taken on an expanded role at PFAV in Nepal. She is now working with both The TEJ Initiative Program and The Dhading Days for Girls Enterprise.
The Enterprise in Dhading is very busy this year. The women are working hard and distributing many kits to local school girls along with teaching the Ambassador of Women’s Health course. They are holding classes at village mother’s groups and are working on larger scale marketing and sales plans.
The Rupakot Computer and Learning Center is near completion. The computer classes are full every Saturday and the children are eagerly awaiting the opening of the new building. We brought books and more laptop computers on our trip in March and the children are eagerly waiting for a place to study.
In 2020 The PFAV Annual Health Camp will be held in March. We already have a few new volunteers for this trip, so please email Kathy Perez-Silva at email@example.com if you are interested in joining us.
We’re so grateful for your partnership and support this year. Hopefully you now know just how much of a difference your help has made.