So happy to report some major progress from the education committee seen across the world in Kenya. As you may remember the goal of the education committee is to assist with a program for the mentally and physically challenged students in their village schools. Making available materials for students to learn a trade, and also providing wheel chairs to children that have difficulty coming to school each day were among the goals accomplished by this sub committee of Smile Rescue Fund for Kids. Duncan has his work cut out for him, but is focused and determined to carry out the plan to help create a better educational experience for these children whose educational needs are not typically addressed.
I would have loved to see the sweet beginning of Saline’s much anticipated smile which also marks the end of the journey we have traveled for the last four years on a very rough and painful road,i have to leave since it is unavoidable . Out of nothing and without any ray of hope,we started and stumbled.Little did we know that at some point God would bond us with selfless,loving and generous people who have now seen us this far.
A reminder that our Farewell to Duncan gathering is tomorrow night October 25th at 7pm at the Setauket Library: http://www.emmaclark.org/
We will be bringing the three committees together to summarize the progress of each initiative (Water, lighting and Education). The goal is to solidify the three action plans and to discuss fund raising goals, opportunities and strategies. Please bring any interested family members and friends, there are truly so many ways that we can use your help! hope to see you there, please spread the word!
There was a meeting of the electricity committee on 9/26/13. The goal is to purchase lighting for some of the children’s homes so that they can finish their schoolwork in the evening without using kerosene, which is both dangerous and expensive. The solar battery life is about five years. Several committee members had information about different lights available, but of special interest is one company which is located in Nairobi. This company would deliver the lights to the village. The cost will be between $10 and $13 for each light. Several different lights will be purchased before the next meeting so convenience, cost and brightness can be compared.
The first goal will be between 25 and 50d lights depending on cost. Duncan will determine how the lights are distributed. He may take 10 of 50 and donate them to families that have the most need. Perhaps he will charge a $5 fee for the other lights so the monies can be used to purchase more lights.
Next meeting October 25th at the Emma Clarke Library – purchased lights will be compared at that time. Duncan will attend.
How is Saline doing? This is a common question asked by many of us. Not just from a medical perspective, but psychologically as well. I asked Duncan to provide his observations. I’m happy to report the following:
“It is a great delight that Saline’s confidence and self-esteem is already evident through her more smiles, more giggles and uncontrolled desire to admire herself in the mirror due to the surgeries so far accomplished – closing her once wide deformed palate and face. She tells me to take her pictures and send to her mother, it is irresistible. What a looming great happiness, more and wider smiles once done! Thanking her friends and generous contributors all the way.” – Duncan
Please save the date. This will be Duncan’s last time with us before returning home.
Decisions need to be made, we need your input.
The water committee will meet tonight at 7pm at the Coolsmiles Orthodontic office Port Jefferson.
70 North Country Road
Port Jefferson, NY 11777
Call my cell, for directions (631) 974-7511
1) Saline has been undergoing a series of fluid injections in order to expand her skin in anticipation of her next surgery which has been scheduled for Monday, September 16. Dr. Alex Dagum will perform an extensive series of procedures to close her facial defect with two grafts as well as create a nose using a rib graft. The surgery will take place at Stony Book Hospital and take approximately 4-5 hours. There will be two additional surgeries before she can return home.
2) Duncan has been excused from his teaching responsibilities by the Kenyan government for a three month period of time in order to accompany Saline. In order to keep his job, he will have to return home at the end of September or early October. Unfortunately, due to the number of surgeries and the anticipated healing time, Dr. Dagum does not feel that Saline can return home until sometime in November. This creates three dilemmas. First, in order to legally operate on Saline, we need a local guardian. Second, we need someone to accompany Saline back to Nairobi and the adult that travels with her may need to be her guardian. Finally, we need a host family that is willing to supervise her recovery. Volunteers and suggestions are welcome.
3) I would like to schedule a meeting to discuss our findings before Duncan returns home. Save the date: Friday October 25, 7:00 pm, Emma Clark Library. I realize that everyone may not be available, however it is important to have representation from each committee so we can move forward.
Once again, your participation is greatly appreciated.
Dr. Leon Klempner
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