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Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Thank you, Tika and Shelley!

Thank you to Tika and Shelley. Your support, expertise, and overall company was mucho appreciated! Our days at the clinic and at the schools could not have gone as smoothly as it did without your help and support. Thank you for being open to the possibilities, for being flexible to the rhythm of each day, for being strong enough to tackle the challenges, and for the laughter and lessons shared.

On the way to the airport.
During the first three weeks in San Pancho we provided dental hygiene services and oral health education for both kindergarten and primary schools in addition to implementing weekend clinics where members from the community were seen. The children here welcomed us warmly and were very receptive to our presence and services. It was a rewarding experience in many ways for me as I was able to see the students create such a positive experience in just minutes of interaction with the children as well as provide education and services that are meaningful and necessary.  Also, many of the children were left inspired, stating that they would like to be “dentista’s” when they are older and left more informed about oral health care.

The two weekend clinics were exciting for me as I recognized the challenges ahead and the difficult work the students were engaging in.  I quickly became aware of existing disparities in access to care juxtaposed with the value placed on oral health services. I began to understand how much the care we provided was appreciated and valued by the people of San Pancho who offered gratitude for our services with such humility and grace.
 
I am also left feeling very proud of the good work the students have done and the teamwork and camaraderie that comes with this course.  It is hard work and they have risen to the occasion with positivity, commitment and enthusiasm.  I know they have left with a sense of fulfillment and pride in the lives they have touched and affected and I feel truly blessed to be a part of this team.

This field school is a success because of the dedication to provide the best oral health care services possible, in an environment devoid of resources. I am inspired daily by the commitment of the instructor of this course, Ada Barker, and her vision to make a difference in a community so deserving...by Tika Brown


Organizing at the beginning of the day.
What an experience!  I spent 12 days in the little town of San Pancho and I found at the end of each day I reflected about the same facts.  It is important in life to be present, to be thankful for what you have  and to realize it does not take a lot to make a difference in someone else’s life. Laughter and tears can go hand and in hand and communication can be clear with simply a smile. The experiences in the different community settings was purely amazing.   Camosun College should be proud of the students & faculty of the 2016 field school, it made me realize that a profession in the health field is so rewarding on so many levels. The team demonstrated, humility, professionalism, skills and knowledge that were so appreciated by the locals, I was proud to be  part of this team.  I see an interdisciplinary future for Camosun dental programs and look forward to discussing and planning the opportunity to include the CDA program in 2017.  Well done ladies!....by Shelley Melissa


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