GRAND JUNCTION, Colo.-
After treating hundreds of children in Africa, a prominent member of the Horizon-Sunrise Rotary Club returned back home to Grand Junction, and she is still smiling from her experience.
“We set up a pediatric dental clinic for a week, and we treated over 450 children,” said Miquette Gerber, member of the Horizon-Sunrise Rotary Club.
Through the financial support of the Horizon-Sunrise Rotary Club and the organization Medicine Arm-in-Arm, the Wisconsin native traveled all the way to South Africa’s Zululand.
There was one problem she faced. “I’m not a dental or a medical person by any means,” said Miquette.
However, that's when local dentist Dr. Scott VanDusen came into play.
“I brought her in for a day and gave her a crash course,” said Dr. VanDusen, who has been involved in Medicine Arm-in-Arm for nearly 12 years. “She was a godsend. Miquette did a great job over there.”
Though Gerber didn't provide a large amount of help when it came to the dental portion of the trip, VanDusen said because of the state the African children are in, there was still plenty of other support needed
"They are afraid, and they are nervous,” said Dr. VanDusen. “But they are really happy that someone is taking an interest in them, and they are just joyful."
"I’ve been to Africa several times, and the thing that always tugs at my heart is the needs of the children,” said Gerber. “You see them with no shoes and undernourished. It just really pulls at your heartstrings."
Gerber says her successful trip is proof that anyone can lend a helping hand, not just medical professionals.
The group’s next trip to Africa is scheduled sometime in March 2013. For more information on how you can get involved and donate, click here.