I got dropped off at my hotel and was up bright and early to meet up with Michael and spend the day doing whatever. We went to Gateway - our old favorite hangout and met a new girl who we invited to our medical camp on sunday. We went to our old KTV outreach place and they were delighted to have us come back and said yes to a medical camp the next day! We met up with missionary friend and then it was time to meet up with Pert and Chandra. Pert is our awesome 6 month volunteer and Chandra works for a local ngo/shelter. So we sped off in the rain, with michael insisting I wear his rain jacket and me still managing to get really really wet and arrived only to find out that they were stuck in traffic! So we went up to the movie theater and as we walked through there was a free showing of a japanese movie for the film festival and so we sat and watched it! :) Free movies are always great! Dinner was great! Something about being in a foreign country where you bond so easily and well with people who speak english! So by the end of the night I felt like I had known Pert forever! And Chandra invited us to do first aid training for her girls. The night started with Michael and Pert not being allowed to it ending with them being able to come :) YAY!
I had planned to sleep in the next morning and found out that the students needed help with prepping meds for the camp the next day. So I was ready by 8 and over there prepping meds with Pert and the students. In two hours we had sorted everything and even hopefully gotten my optometrist friend to come teach us stuff next year cause we have all these glasses and don't know what to do with them! :)
So sunday despite checking twice to see if I set my alarm, I failed to see that I set it on the weekday alarm, so when I woke up at 605 and was supposed to be there by 6 I couldn't believe my eyes! But soon I was ready and Pert and Michael had brought khmer coffee! and so I wasn't going to be hungry and off we went. We got there before the bus arrived and only 2 students there so it was great! The camp was in a buddhist temple. Which was kind of cool! we started with first aid training and then started seeing the patients. 1/2 way through the morning I saw a woman who caught my eye. We prayed for her once - nothing. Prayed again - nothing. The third time though she got better and was so happy!!! After lunch had claire and pert do vitals and pack meds and the medical students all got to see patients. 203 patients :)
Came home so exhausted and even though I hadn't showered since the day before because I got up so late, I fell asleep on my bed - knocked out - and two hours later we were waiting for jennifer to arrive. I fell asleep talking to michael on the tuk tuk while we waited for her delayed flight!
Monday we went to the shelter to teach. I was waffling between letting Pert teach vs michael and me teaching and went with the latter and it ended up being great. Although I trained pert, he never got to see it in action and so I think it really helped him know how to do it well cause Michael and I are such a stellar team! :) And Pert and Jennifer recorded it for me for future training. We got invited back to do a medical camp for the girls in the shelter. Then we ended up at what I think is the best place to eat in all of PP! Java cafe. For all of those who know me, you know how much I dislike the food there, but this cafe - although a little pricier then most is fabulous!
Tuesday we had lunch with a volunteer nutritionist to figure out the feeding program idea. So as we talked she recommended education more then anything else and I remember thinking, "Oh :( " but we kept talking and then a new idea came to me at the end of the conversation. While I was in N..K.. earlier this year I saw each house had a garden and I was thinking I haven't seen that in most of the villages we go to. The students had pointed out that a feeding program is not sustainable and so I had been thinking, what can I do that is but doable and I asked, "how about a garden!" We will teach each person how to have a garden and provide the seeds. Although all the khmer are initially against it - though I don't understand why, especially cause I am a new gardener and find it sooo fun, I think it's doable! So then the students asked me to go with them. While our stuff was stuck in customs they met a government official who is helped them and wanted to meet me because I am christian! so we met and got to test out the equipment that was originally sent for us but now we are donating to a provincial health clinic so that in the future our custom can clear easily. We refused to pay a bribe and the medical camps we held although enough to get our stuff through, weren't enough I guess to be in the good graces of the people in power. So although I was super sad to see we have to give two ultrasound machines and an ekg machine away to people who probably won't even be able to use it :( I am hopeful that if God brought us an ultrasound machine so unexpectedly, He'll do it again! and this time it won't be an old model but a new one! :) Pray for us! But on the bright side, with this new contact we can do medical camps anywhere, anytime - no more need for long drives back and forth trying to get permission! YAY! God is sooo good. While I was there I was talking to him about my desire to minister to muslims and my heart for them and so he said, come to my home town and suddenly a medical camp was arranged for thursday and we had our saturday one changed to a new location! All so fast! All so God.
Wednesday we did first aid training at our hotel! :) they loved it! Simply loved it and I got to see Pert try his first time and he was awesome!!! They loved him and I don't have to worry about a thing :) And showing him how it's supposed to be done instead of the awkward way I trained him helped him too! Then we were off to the shelter where it was so sad to see what health care here is like. Jennifer wanted to cry the whole time because of what she saw and it made me so happy to see my sister in law's heart :) She's so awesome
Thursday was a medical camp at Kompong Chnang. It was my favorite so far! The people were so sweet and although sometimes I feel our medical camps don't really help a lot -this time I felt the patients really really needed a doctor. My heart just went out to them as I saw the lady with metastatic cancer or one that I was convinced the colon cancer, or the kid that probably has TB and was so cachetic it was sad to see.... I am so grateful for the opportunity to serve in Cambodia and to make a difference.
On sunday Pert had asked me if I felt proud to see what I had accomplished with the students while the medical camp was going on. And I honestly said, that I don't feel like it's me. I honestly feel like it has nothing to do with me. But as I was at the camp on thursday at one point I just got teary eyed because I realized, WOW GOD! I remembered when I was on my knees praying, having given up and how the next week the medical students showed up wanting to learn and now they are doing such amazing work! hehe! just writing this makes me want to cry. God is soooo good! I KNOW I didn't do this, but I feel soooo blessed that God allowed me to be a part of this. I feel so very very privileged!
Friday - we were supposed to go to the province at night but Rithy is so great - he's just as tight as me with money. So instead we are getting up early and leaving so that we can save money on a guest house and the van for 1 day :) I so love my students! So today we went to three different ktvs to try to solicit them to let us do a medical camp :) 1 said yes, one said no and one said maybe. So tuesday's plan is two ktvs (our usual where they love us and apparently everyone recognizes us) and maybe one more! But since plans changed and we had some free time and we weren't able to do the medical camp at the ktv as planned :) someone got their nails done :) Can't beat 6 dollars for a mani and pedi :) and we had time to chat with Claire - an amazing missionary from singapore I was wanting Jennifer to meet but I didn't think we had time to! God is good and has everything perfectly under control. I was supposed to meet up with one of my original medical students today and he wanted to come to the ktv outreach and I felt bad telling him it had to be postponed cause the manager was out and it turned out last minute he had got busy too! God really is perfect!
Tomorrow we are off bright and early and gone for the weekend. I'll write more when I get back. God bless you all. Pics are on our facebook page - Save each one.
please pray for us!