February 8, 2019
Dear MRI Partner,
Let me bring you up to date on what is happening at Medical Relief International.
Medical Relief International (501c3) sends out short term medical/dental teams. Last week we had 2 teams out serving:
- The Mayans in Guatemala - (29 volunteers) led by Dr. Thomas Dean
- Manila, Philippines – (20 volunteers) led by Dr. Mike Karr
- 2 teams serving in Haiti in March (trips are full)
- Tanzania, Africa – late Mays TB
The Barikiwa Health Center
(BHC) (501c3) is the US funding organization for Barikiwa Health Center. This is an official NGO (non-government office) in Tanzania. I am the only US individual on the BHC board, and will remain until the remaining construction of all phases of the BHC are completed. This NGO is Tanzanian owned and operated.
- The doors were opened on June 1, 2018 and since that time the staff have been working 2 12-hour shifts. People are coming for miles to be helped because BHC offers quality care and the best in central Tanzania.
- Last week we installed an automatic diesel generator, very necessary with power going out almost every day.
- Satellite Internet was FINALLY installed. Now x-rays can be sent to the US for consultation.
- We are currently…
- Developing policy/procedures for staff
- Installing fingerprint scanners to keep the facility as secure as possible
- Registering all staff with the government
- We continue to request photos, which is difficult for staff there, as they are increasingly busy.
- People being served:
- Patients with Malaria, Typhoid, and other diseases.
- Quality Dental and Maternity care
- 2 Gynecologists come to the clinic from Mwanza 2 days a week to help and mentor
- We are hiring a Pediatrician who will begin a regular rotating schedule beginning in March, 2019
- Gravel driveway eventually needs to be “brick”
- Next phase of BHC is the Pediatric Center
- We are remodeling the 40’ container that sits on the campus on a foundation and roofing it
- Phase 3 is the Surgery Center. This will focus on C-sections; cataracts, and other surgeries as needed.
- We need to take our IT specialist to Tanzania to network the clinic into each room, as it now has the internet installed! (Funds will be needed for this)
Josh Myers, my friend in Arizona who was our major donor to the Myers Clinic, and John Mndolwa, my new Tanzanian friend who works with a foundation in Tanzania, traveling there once a month, will hopefully join me in my next trip to Tanzania (John is a rich source of information and advice!). They will see first-hand what is happening, and I look forward to receiving their input as we move forward.
- We hope to meet with officials at the University in Mwanza about starting the first dental hygiene program in Tanzania. Thanks to Mary from Lake Washington Tech for developing curriculum for this program – equipment is already in Tanzania.
NOTE: Everything you give to the Barikiwa Health Center goes directly there. Reminder: there are no paid staff at Medical Relief International. The money that comes in goes out – no administrative fees!
What about Bill and Patty Mays?
Many of you know that last year I (Bill) left the pastoral position at our church. This had been on my mind for some time, and the time was right. With encouragement from family and friends I started a new business and now work as an Independent Daily and Catastrophic Insurance Adjuster. This meant going back to school, studying the computer program, studying for the insurance exams (completed 2 years of schooling in 3 months), and passing my state licensing exam the first try - only with God’s help!
Today I am licensed in 5 states, and Canada for catastrophes. Of course, Washington State is keeping us plenty busy with our latest wind and snow events! God has blessed us TREMENDOUSLY, as we have so much work, we can really choose who to work with and where.
Bill's biggest challenge was COMPUTER skills! Thank God Patty, also retiring from her job at the church, came alongside to help, as she works diligently and faithfully by my side – making us a TEAM to be reckoned with! 2018 was definitely filled with the frustration of learning, but much blessings! And we can’t forget our IT specialist, Keith Duarte, who has been invaluable to both MRI and WE Mays & Associates, who has helped us through several technical catastrophes!
Yes, we are still in the ministry of helping people around the world, but directing MRI from our desks here at home in 2019, as we get our new business off the ground, and the difficult year of learning behind us.
We continue to walk by faith and not sight, and know for certainty that God is with us!
Isaiah 43:19 – “See, I am doing a new thing"!