FLYING EYE HOSPITAL PROGRAM: A VOLUNTEER’S REFLECTIONS

June 2017

In May 2017, Orbis launched the first Flying Eye Hospital program of the year in Can Tho, Vietnam. 8 volunteers from Deutsche Bank Ho Chi Minh traveled to Can Tho and served as translators and interpreters. This is the 4th time Deutsche Bank has sponsored and sent volunteers to Orbis's FEH programs.

Taking part in Deutsche Bank’s volunteering activity with Orbis is a wonderful experience. I translated and provided logistics for Orbis staff, I felt very happy when I was volunteering.

I still remember, there was one patient who did not have any relatives and came to the hospital with her friend. They were both in tears when Orbis Volunteer Faculty Dr Brian Leonard was examining her. They were so grateful for the free examination and treatment! It’s so amazing to work on the Orbis Flying Eye Hospital. The patients and relatives were also excited as most of them have never seen a plane before, let alone get up close to one!

Tai

I met an 8-year old boy, Du Tan Tai, on the plane. He is very smart and good in Mathematics. He fell and hurt his eye when he was 4, causing his retina to detach. He had surgeries at two other hospitals, but his vision did not improve. He still could not see clearly. Tai and his mother went to Can Tho Eye Hospital and he was diagnosed with cataract in his right eye. They were very sad and despondent as Tai is the only son. His parents earn USD175 per month and cannot afford the treatment. The doctors then explained that the Flying Eye Hospital will be in Can Tho to conduct a program and signed them up for it.

Another sight that left a strong impression in me is the way the Orbis Volunteer Faculty doctors provide training to the local trainees. Even though I am not familiar with clinical or medical topics, I felt very touched by their lectures and their teaching and guidance methods.

I hope I can volunteer with Orbis again at other Deutsche Bank activities!