Ms Christine Nguyen (WA)
Mission: Nghi Thuan field trip 2016
“The experience was extremely rewarding and I highly recommend it to anyone who is able to make this journey. The mission has highlighted how fortunate I am and how much more these people need our help. Everyone can make a difference.”
My trip to Nghi Thuan village was the first charity mission I’d ever partaken in and one I hope will be the first of many to come. I didn’t know what to expect and was worried the 2.5 days wouldn’t allow for enough time to make a significant enough difference especially given the amount of planning that had gone into mission.
My role was to work in the pharmacy department dispensing scripts which was extremely busy due to the extremely high volume. Coupled with the heat, lack of computers and an established structure or system, the fatigue quickly set in soon after we commenced and made for a difficult working environment which quickly reminded me I was far from the air-conditioned, beach-side pharmacy I was accustomed to. I was fortunate enough to spend a bit of time speaking to a patient whom was very thankful for my attention and impressed that I could converse in Vietnamese. She didn’t have any family to look after her and told me that she wasn’t in good health either. I knew the 1 month supply of medicine probably wouldn’t have exactly cured her every ailment, but I gave her some lifestyle advice which can often make a huge difference.
Regardless of the medicine or the advice I gave, she made me feel so appreciated because I took the time to talk to her and listen to her story. I felt so touched that she regarded me so highly. It made me realise that if I managed to make even just 1 person feel relevant and cared for, my time and effort was worthwhile. It made me realise how limited they were to basic healthcare not only through funding by the government but access as well, something we definitely take for granted.
The experience was extremely rewarding and I highly recommend it to anyone who is able to make this journey. The mission has highlighted how fortunate I am and how much more these people need our help. Everyone can make a difference.