Update: Jessie’s Mission Trip to Uganda
In September 2014, I had the amazing privilege of serving as part of a medical mission trip to Jinja, Uganda.
A group of nine individuals associated with Grace Community Church, in Fulton, Maryland, joined with the organization AOET to serve those who have been devastated by the AIDS epidemic. This organization focuses on supporting the widows and orphans impacted by this virus. Three out of every ten people in this region are infected with the disease.
During our visit, we spent our time reaching out to nearby villages, regions where there is no access to medical care. People traveled from far distances, sometimes waiting an entire day, just to see a medical provider. In addition to providing general medical care, HIV testing was done for all patients. Medications, which were generously provided through donations from the States, were then given at no charge to patients as needed. We also had the opportunity to go to a local school and examine children, as well as provide much needed treatment for parasitic worms.
By most standards, these people have so little. Yet, they are genuinely happy. It becomes a privilege to give up daily conveniences, such as running water or electricity, for a week or two so that you can truly appreciate someone else’s way of life. These trips always provide a reminder to me of how truly blessed I am; it puts things into a humbling perspective. This is my seventh medical mission trip. As much as I set out with the goal of helping those in need, I always leave realizing that they are, in fact, the ones who have changed me, and most certainly for the better. And, as always, I anxiously await next time.