PET MO-Columbia update 1-26-15 PETs built since 1-1-15: 65
Two events impacted the country of India over this weekend. Our
President Barack Obama made a state visit, and we here at PET are today
loading a container with 185 PETs (60 from our production) to go to the
United Church of Christ Mission Hospital in Mungeli, India. Several of
the doctors from that hospital have been here to visit our PET shop and
requested the PETs. The Rev. Steve Swope, pastor of the Columbia UCC
Church solicited money from area UCC Churches for the shipping costs.
That is the way we like for PET to work — ownership and responsibility
all the way.
Another story of “how the PETs get there”: The North Kansas City Rotary
Club has for several years been sending an annual medical & dental mission
group to Jamaica. This year a team of some 30 doctors, dentists and nurses
are going. They have found two persons in their area of work that need
PETs, and are FedXing two PETs, one adult and one child, to Jamaica for
them. The cost is over $1,000. They know the cost of NOT sending the PETs,
that two people will be forced to crawl upon the ground for the rest of
their lives. The cost of the GIFT OF MOBILITY AND HOPE cannot be measured
in dollars. This is the third year we have worked with them.
“Learn all you can from the mistakes of others. You won’t have time to
make them all yourself.” – Aalfred Sheinwold
BIRDS OF A FEATHER –
“Birds of a feather flock together;” “We are known by the friends we
keep;” “The apple does not fall far from the tree.”
If those cliches are true, and they basically are, then PET is in good condition. Those with whom we work are a special breed of caring, generous, capable and sharing people. We come in many colors, languages, cultures and religions. But we all share one thing, a genuine and active
care and concern for those at the very bottom of the society in which they live. We seek out those whose lives have been disrupted by a disease called polio, a piece of metal called a landmine, a birth defect, war or work injuries, leprosy, diabetes, or any other such debilitating causes.
One of those “birds” with whom we flock is called ACTS, organized here in Columbia, MO, twenty years ago. I immediately became a volunteer,
with my main task that of soliciting, hauling and loading surplus
hospital equipment into 40′ containers to ship to The Republic of
Georgia. Since then PET has shipped about 250 PETs to Georgia.
Yesterday I attended a luncheon to honor visiting Dr. Guram Amindze from the Georgian Medical Association. ACTS (A Call To Serve) has successfully completed a State Department Transportation Grant which
allowed ACTS to send privately donated medications, medical supplies
and equipment to Georgian hospitals to be used by Georgian physicians.
Items shipped included over $535 million of items as well as over $125
million of military surplus medical items.
About ten years ago I flew to Georgia with Dr. Trish Blair, Director of
ACTS. We had on board our new C-17 plane $9.2 million in donated
medicines plus several pallets of much needed iodized salt. Twenty six
young G.I.’s, specialists, were on board to help set up the equipment
we had sent, and to train people in its use.
In addition, ACTS has developed a Women and Children Health Center
(with a $120,000 grant from Japan); Rotary supports a vocational
training program. Physicians from the University here in Columbia go to
Georgia to train. ACTS sponsors a diabetic camp for children that has
1,203 enrolled this season.
Those are some of the birds with whom we flock. If you are someplace
and hear ACTS mentioned, nod and say, with a bit of a swagger, “Yes,
they are PET partners.”
They need many more PETs in Georgia, and I am seeking shipping funds,
since the government money is gone.