Sunday, September 27, 2015

2015 Medical Clinic

With Global Health Outreach (GHO), we hosted this year's remote medical clinic from September 13 to 23. We served about 1,000 patients, which included seven children affected by disabilities. 
This photo shows our view when walking back from the hospital to our hotel, which is to the right.
The first stop for patients was triage.
GHO provided four general physicians, an OB/GYN doctor, an oral surgeon, a radiologist and several nurses to see the patients.
My role in the clinic involved logistics as well as medical counselor since I served in this role in Texas. A great privilege was being able to interact with many children and their families. Seven children were affected by disabilities.
We invited these families to take part in a day camp on Saturday, although we were unsure where we could host such an activity. Tiger, the English name of the young man next to me, served as my main translator. He did a fabulous job and was a great encourager.
The man to my immediate right agreed to become our first volunteer in the area. We met him in June while distributing wheelchairs.
We decided the best place to have our day camp would be at the hotel where we were staying. At first, the manager (to my right in the lavender shirt) said it would cost 600 RMB to rent a meeting space, but when we explained how we were trying to bless the families affected by disabilities, the hotel offered the room for free. The hotel staff even helped take photos.
Five families came to our day camp, which was the first day camp we have offered outside our city.
And of course, every clinic comes with special memories.
Five of our translator volunteers this year came from our weekly study group.  
We also distributed 10 wheelchairs during this clinic with the Red Cross.
And I was in charge of organizing each meal for the team, aided by Rui Rui and Tiger. This photo shows me with a chef preparing jiaozi, dumplings.
People took photos of us wherever we went, including convenience stores where we purchased water. This particular store manager took my photo more than 16 times during the week. I stopped counting.
This is our 2015 GHO medical team, accompanied by three members of the Red Cross and two hospital staff. It was a great team ... a privilege to be a part.

~ Kevin

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Roaring Birthday Fun

Molly turned 8 this month! She decided back in March that she wanted a Jungle Safari birthday party, and she began making plans. We had endless conversations about decorations, games, food. There were multiple checklists involved.
She had her heart set on dressing up as a lion for the party, and Hudson played the role of safari guide.
We ordered a cake from a bakery across the street, and it was no problem for them to match the lion on our decorations.
 Molly enlisted the help of Kevin's mom to send vines and paper leaves along with various other jungle-related decorations. We tried to camouflage our newly installed internet cable wire with Happy Birthday letters.
Molly created a coloring station for her friends. She drew a crocodile, lion, monkey and elephant that we photocopied for the kids to choose one to color.
Kevin was a big hit as storyteller! Hudson helped him hold the visual aids.
 Children representing six different countries attended.
After eating cake, the kids went on a treasure hunt for gold coins.
Molly changed into a zebra outfit and took pictures with her school teachers (above) and her summer tutor (below). 
We held her party the weekend before school began, and her birthday fell on a Monday this year (Labor Day in the USA). I baked brownies and she celebrated together with her classmates that day.
 Each student made a card for her and presented it during their afternoon celebration.
 It touches my heart to see how loved Molly is by her many friends, classmates and teachers. This was her fourth birthday to celebrate in China, and she has blended her language, gifts and talents into this hospitable country we call home. Happy birthday, Molly!

A Wedding to Remember

A neighbor asked Molly and Hudson to participate in a friend's beautiful wedding. It was quite different than the traditional Chinese weddings we've attended in the past. We learned the groom had lived in Canada for eight years, so many Western-style elements were added. The ceremony and buffet reception were held outdoors at a golf club.
Here's a 27 second video of their walk down the aisle:

Molly told me the emcee is saying: "Welcome the cute, beloved babies walking down the aisle with the rings. I hope they have a wonderful day. Now, show the rings!"
I was amazed by the amount of flowers! Typically, artificial flowers are used at weddings, but not this time. They were gorgeous!
The kids carried the actual rings tied to the flowers.
Can you spot them?
Musicians played beforehand, and there was a fancy juice table. (We arrived at 9 a.m. and the ceremony began at 10:30. Lunch followed.)
Dozens of people were taking photos.
The kids had a fun time, and we were thankful for the chance to participate.