I just returned after a fun and productive trip to Kampala, Uganda. The Rotarians in Kampala have an annual cancer run. Money from this event was used to build a cancer center on the grounds of St Francis Nsambya Hospital. A global grant was sponsonsored by the Rotary Club of Kampala Ssese Islands and supported by other clubs of district 9211. I was president of my club in York, Maine when my District Governor, Carolyn Johnson, asked if we would be interested in supporting this project. As a medical oncologist, I was very interested in seeing this project succeed. My club joined with other clubs in District 7780 to partner in the global grant to form a Vocational Training Team to go to Kampala and do training, to have a team come from Nsambya Hospital to the US to observe, and to provide two shipping containers of supplies to help equip the new cancer center.
I was part of an 8 person team including nurses, physicians and others who went to Kampala to provide information about cancer treatment in our community. The hospitality that we received from the Rotarians and hospital staff was amazing. The poverty that these medical professionals are struggling against is daunting but with their enthusiasm and desire to serve, I am sure that they will improve the lives of many. I look forward to the second part of the training when the Ugandan medical professionals will come to visit us and observe.
Our participation in this project all developed from a chance meeting between District Governor Carolyn Johnson of Maine and District Governor Stephen Mwanje of Kampala during a cultural exchange thus exemplifying the importance of service through acquaintence. Also, as a web enthusiast, I was able to offer to create websites for the directors of several NGOs whom I met further extending the precept..