Thursday, September 25, 2014

Medical 3 of 3: True Development

As we said in the first of this series, our number one goal is to see fellowships started and hearts changed. That is why we are here. We believe that when people follow God and their hearts are changed that is the greatest step that can be made in community or social development. The problems we see are complex and many. Alcoholism, promiscuity, domestic violence, child abuse, child labor, and the list goes on and on. It is the same everywhere among all peoples. Do we, as westerners, have answers for all these problems? Does child abuse still happen in America and Western Europe? Yes. Depression? Yes. Theft, Murder, Infidelity, and Drunkenness? Yes. Therefore, we believe that knowledge, finance, and laws or regulations cannot solve these social issues. There has to be more. A heart change is needed, a surrender of wills to His will is the only way we see a whole community change. That is what we want to see happen.

On the other hand, since we are lending a hand in the medical, dental, and education realms, we also want to make sure that we are helping responsibly. We don’t want to condition the community to think that everything they need should come from the outside for free. People wanting to do good can destroy communities that way. For that reason, our medical and dental camps are not completely free. There is no charge to see the doctor, but we charge full price for the medications. From a western perspective the cost of medicine might still seem like a prohibitive cost, but here medicine is very affordable. Some courses of antibiotics only cost 20 cents while some of the more expensive courses are still only about five dollars. So we provide the doctor for free as well as the transportation for the medication (which usually costs almost as much as the medication itself), but the recipient must pay for his or her own medication. The dentist will provide a check-up for free, but we charge a flat rate of 2 dollars for extractions, restorations, or cleanings. In this way we hope to do our helping in a responsible way.

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