|2010 Medical Mission|
2010 Viet Nam Medical Mission
2010 Team Member Profile
I have never been to Vietnam and my inspiration to apply for this mission is to help the less fortunate in my home country. I have had experience in the scientific field because I worked at the National Institutes of Health for two years and my previous field of study was Pre-Medical. I hope to gain knowledge of where my family has come from and I wish to visit Vietnam for the first time and to help provide medical services. My parents are active in supporting Vietnamese Charities and I have been to many charity functions and seen videos and testimonials about how much help is needed in Vietnam.
I decided to make it a personal goal to return and be able to make a difference. After attending the UMDNJ Global Health Conference 2009, and learning about VNMAP’s mission, I am confident that I have found an organization that shares my personal aspirations. Through this experience, I know I will gain many friendships and meaningful experiences that I may apply to my future endeavors as a health care professional. Furthermore, this experience will offer me an opportunity to learn more about the Vietnamese culture and the Vietnamese people.
My family vacation to Saigon, Vietnam over 14 years ago was my first glimpse of the “real world”. I had never seen so much hardship and suffering literally at my feet. I vividly remember an old beggar without any legs lying down in the dirt road hoping that people would give him money. At such a young age of seven, it broke my heart to see that this unfortunate individual, among many others, did not have anybody to care for him. I made a vow to myself that one day I would return to Vietnam and provide them with some type of health care.
The mission trip to Vietnam would be a wonderful opportunity for me to fulfill that promise that I made to myself. I look forward to working with doctors and other members of the mission trip. Even further, I am excited to meet the patients that I will be caring for while absorbing as much of the Vietnamese culture as I can.
I know there will be countless lessons I will be able to take home from this mission. Through this experience I hope to become a better leader and team player, to witness what it is like for a doctor to work in the field, outside of a comfortable, technologically advanced environment, and to learn how to tackle out of ordinary problems and think on one’s feet when the clock is ticking. But, most importantly, I believe it is not a concern of what I will gain out of this experience, but rather what the people of Vietnam will gain out of this experience. I believe that the most important objective of this mission is to bring the people of Vietnam help that they could not afford, knowledge that they did not know existed, and hope that they have long given up on. If this can be accomplished, I believe I will have gained everything I seek from this mission.
I am inspired by the opportunity to make a difference through delivering medical care and teaching about disease prevention. I hope to not only learn medical and patient skills from the people I work with, but to also learn from sharing our different backgrounds and ideas. Most of all, I am excited to experience medicine at its heart, which is providing care to individuals who need it most, with the resources at hand. I think that the work we’ll do will help alleviate the healthcare disparity in Vietnam and bring medical attention to those who would otherwise not receive any, either because they are too poor or because they do not have access to medical facilities. By interacting directly with patients and native healthcare workers in underserved parts of the country, I believe that we will be able to better grasp the needs and challenges within Vietnam’s healthcare system, and with this insight, we can become more effective members of the international medical community.
My initial inspiration mostly derived from Ms. MinhVan Tran’s—my teacher—experience and enthusiasm. Besides, I have participated in numerous community service events here in the U.S. as an international student from Vietnam. Ironically, as a Vietnamese, I have not contributed nearly as much towards the Vietnamese community. Thus, VNMAP provides me a great opportunity to fulfill such negligence. Most important, I am looking forward to establish new friendship and to have an opportunity to feel genuine happiness.
I see this mission trip as an opportunity to explore and to challenge myself. I believe this trip will provide me with many opportunities to learn from the doctors and pharmacists about the different health conditions people can acquire. Of course in the process, there will be many challenges and obstacles, which I will have to face. By facing these obstacles, I believe I will be a stronger person in the future. Also as a Vietnamese myself, I find this trip as a way to give back to the less fortunate people who were not given the opportunity to live in a free country like America like I do. I think by going back to Vietnam to help, I will be able to learn and explore my culture more since I came to America at a young age.
Throughout my life, I have had the opportunity to travel extensively to many parts of the world. This exposure to so many varied cultures and lifestyles has impacted me on many different levels. It has raised my awareness of the deplorable conditions in which some people live, the widespread deficit in quality healthcare, and the need for everyone to contribute in any way they can, to reduce the suffering of our fellow human beings. Being part of this mission is very important to me. It is the first step I can take toward making a difference for someone. I would like very much for this to be an integral part of my medical career, now, as well as in the future. I strongly feel that experiences and challenges that extend beyond the classroom contribute greatly to the development of compassionate physicians. I hope to gain the experience of working with a diverse team in less than optimal conditions, as well as develop an understanding of the Vietnamese culture and medical system. It would be an honor to help educate, care for, and learn from people who lack what we often take for granted in the United States.
2010 Mission Newsletter
2010 Mission Financial Report