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Tanzania

A Busy Monday

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A Busy Monday

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olorien-clinic-record How many patients do you think the average U.S. doctor sees on an average day? If you asked me I thought 20-30 patients a day sounds fair. After some research I found out I wasn’t too far from the average and while the numbers range based on practice or specialty - on the low end a highly-specialized doctor will meet and diagnosis close to 20 patients and on the other side of the spectrum an ER doctor may treat nearly 50 patients during a shift.

Taking into account that seeing just 20 patients takes an incredible amount of skill and expertise, it’s all the more amazing when you consider the news that last Monday 160 people were treated at the New Hope Initiative Olorien Community Clinic in Arusha, Tanzania.

One Hundred and Sixty.

The patients were children, parents, uncles, grandparents, boys, girls, men & women - all ages and the reasons for visits likely ranged from common colds and respiratory issues to growth removals, broken bones and positive malaria diagnosis. Now you are probably thinking, “wow those doctors (plural) were busy that day!”

Yes, Dr. Byemba – the head doctor and only doctor on site that day – was busy as he diagnosed & treated the large majority of all these cases. Much like an ER doctor, Dr. Byemba throughout the day will go from the exam room to the operating room multiple times and while the instruments are sterilized in the autoclave for the next procedure, he will see the patients not requiring surgery.

To be honest it would be easy to recognize just Dr. Byemba and his incredible work because what he does on a daily basis astonishes almost everyone that has the chance to spend the day with him. But Dr. Byemba would be the first to say that he couldn’t do this alone. The staff – from the clerk checking patients in and the nurses taking vitals to the lab technicians analyzing samples and the pharmacist distributing medications that in many cases will save someone life – together deserve to be applauded for their hard work.

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I was raised to always highlight a job well done and just saying “well done” almost doesn’t seem sufficient when it comes to a person’s health and life. Yet, it’s a great place to start when recognizing the amazing staff that serve this small community in Tanzania six days a week. It is also easy to celebrate when the numbers hit 160 but how much more would you commend their work if you then found out that on Tuesday more than 120 people came, on Wednesday nearly 130 and they averaged that for the rest of the week. On Saturday evening as the front gates closed more than 800 people had passed through the clinic and this small dedicated staff of nurses, technicians, clerks and pharmacists led by Dr. Byemba brought comfort and in many cases healing to a community. When you watch the news and you hear about so many terrible things happening around the world – please take a moment and think about this amazing team in O’Lorien and smile knowing that there are people still doing great things and pursuing work on a daily basis that it so much greater than themselves.

By T.J. Walter - Olorien Clinic Project Director

 

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USA Tour

For the first time ever, New Hope Initiative was privileged to tour the USA with two of our international partners. In the last quarter of 2012 NHI directors Sandy and Karen Baird, Tanzanian mission partners Vernon and Mary Smith, and our African medical director Dr. and Mrs. Byemba, crossed the country sharing the mission and message of New Hope Initiative with churches and other organizations. usa tourThe dynamic presentation centered on the Arusha medical center and the riveting story of the Byemba family’s sojourn from the Congo to Tanzania. Ten churches and many other smaller venues across the country heard their inspirational story. This tour brought a much higher level of recognition and interest to the ministry of NHI and was fruitful in producing specific help for the incredible work being done by our medical center in Arusha, Tanzania.

Tanzanian Clinic Expansion

We are putting the finishing touches on an exciting and extensive remodeling project at our medical clinic in Arusha, Tanzania. The new wing will more than double the space of the facility and make it more effective for us as our patient base continues to expand. The new two-story wing will host all of our imaging services (x-ray and ultrasound), a new receptionist office, and a waiting area that will greatly improve crowd flow in the facility. Clinic Inside

Clinic Outside

We will have an entire floor upstairs that will be set aside for future development. The new facility should be fully operational in the coming weeks and will not only improve the effectiveness of our center but also raise the visibility of our presence in the greater Arusha area. We are still in need of about $25,000 to finish the project so please be praying with us that these funds will be available shortly.

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A Little Girl Named Irene

Irene has lived her entire 12 years in a small village in northern Tanzania. Her community is rurally poor, however her family provides a loving and happy environment for young Irene.  When her health began to rapidly decline in June, the tranquility of Irene's family shattered. Her mother took her to a local clinic, but their lack of expertise and her family's financial situation prevented her from receiving the required treatment. As Irene's strength continued to fade, her mother became increasingly desperate, fearing for her little girl's life.  She made the decision to try a clinic 2.5 hours away in Arusha where, according to the talk, the facilities and staff were excellent and where you could be treated even if your financial resources were meager. Irene and her mom took the arduous bus journey, made even more difficult by her severely weakened condition. They arrived at New Hope Initiative’s Clinic in the Olorien neighborhood of Arusha, where she saw Dr. Byemba and his staff immediately. Following in-house blood work, she was diagnosed with malaria, a urinary tract infection, an amoeba, and an umbilical hernia. The staff gave her mother all the necessary medications and, for the first time in weeks, Irene’s mom was finally confident that her daughter would recover.

Little Irene’s dramatic story was 1 of 134 similar stories that day, of hopeless people receiving a healing touch from the amazing staff of New Hope Initiative’s Medical Clinic. Thank you, ministry partners, for saving little Irene and for making the ending of this difficult story a happy one.

By Sandy Baird - Director of New Hope Initiative

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How Did He Inspire You?

For my wife and I the adventure began nearly 18 months ago. Leading a missions trip was something we prayed about and was high on our list of dream to-do’s but like many people, jobs & scheduling remained a constant hurdle. It wasn’t until a radical shift in my career and the encouragement from close friends that we applied and were offered the opportunity to lead a team from McLean Bible Church with New Hope Initiative to Tanzania & Kenya.

As both of us have been part of short term mission teams in the past we spent much of our preparation time with the team focusing on how this two-week experience could usher in lasting change within their lives instead of just a flash-in-the-pan spiritual moment. This was reinforced once we arrived in country and Sandy Baird, the director of New Hope Initiative, spoke to the same ideal and challenged each team member to dig deep and see where God was inspiring them through this trip. Little did we know that the preparations and those conversations with Sandy would end up challenging us in ways that we are still unraveling and seeing where God is leading us.

For many of you reading this you have been on a trip with NHI or you know someone that has. So I have a challenge for you - when you come back or when you have the opportunity to sit down with someone that went take the time to dig a little deeper – beyond the safari tour, the souvenirs, the foods consumed and the always prerequisite bathroom question – ask them How did He inspire you? There is a chance that you or the friend you are asking may not know at that exact moment but maybe there is a glimpse of an idea or their heart has clearly been burdened to make a change. In any of these cases, accountability is a strong tool and I encourage you to take the time to follow up and pray with them or find someone that can become a partner in prayer and a sounding board for ideas.

While some ideas may involve NHI - and we truly hope that many of you will sponsor a student through Penda, share the mission of Project Biashara, or help serve in some capacity within an active project - but in addition, hopefully the inspiration will also hit close to home as you are likely going to spend 50 weeks over the next year there as opposed to Arusha or Kibera. For some it may become evident that the mission field God has placed in your path at this moment may not be as far as Africa, India or South America but maybe the next cubicle, the next door neighbor or the orphan in the city that needs a shoulder to lean on.

So how did He inspire us? We feel blessed and incredibly challenged to say that God inspired a lot in us through our time in East Africa – many ideas we are still processing through and others that we are currently in the midst of. For starters, it wasn’t less than a week after we returned from our first trip that we knew we wanted to go back. It was clear to us that God was not finished working on our hearts to serve the ‘least of these’ and as of this writing we have just wrapped up leading our second trip back to Kenya & Tanzania within a year.  As anyone that has lead a mission’s team knows, sometimes the greatest moments can come when seeing a change in others and we have had the amazing opportunity to watch six young adults from our first team embrace the ideas that God inspired in them - some within NHI and in other local ministries. But we are also filled with even more excitement as we have the chance to ask five other young adults that we just returned with the same thing we want you to ask yourselves and those returning from trips this summer – How did He inspire you?

By TJ Walter - New Hope Initiative Board Member

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