Monday, July 14, 2008

Mission Success!

This past Thursday we completed the Hand In Health Muunoo Smile Mission and it was an absolute success.

Overall we saw over 125 patients and provided the following treatments:
1. Extractions
2. Fillings
3. Oral Hygiene Instruction

In addition to our base clinic work we did outreach in a neighboring village named Bessai, where we held short lecture classes to educate patients on tooth anatomy and the importance of preventative care. In that one day, we were able to teach 60 mothers and almost as many children the importance of properly caring for their teeth.

In order to make teaching preventative dentistry easier, we collaborated with the current directors of the dental unit to make an educational mural on the walls of the clinic. We also traveled to Swedent Dental Clinic in Kotou to experience dentistry in private practice. We hope to continue this educational program to help broaden the experiences of the women working in the clinic and give them greater exposure to clinical practices.

Overall the mission was a huge success! We left with a new understanding of dentistry in The Gambia and many new friends. Thank you for all who have been a part of making this misison a reality! We couldn't have done it without you!

More updates about the Muunoo Smile Mission will be posted on the website in August. Look for updated information and more photographs then!

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Muunoo Smile Clinic!

Good News in The Gambia!

So here's a quick update of our recent progress!

1. We had an announcement made over Gambian radio that our team would be at the Sulayman Junkung General Hospital and have been overwhelmed by the response! So far, we have treated almost 100 patients and are awaiting more come Monday!

2. We are currently in Kotu and tomorrow will be visiting Swedent Dental Clinic. We have implemented the first portion of our dental continuing education program and will be bringing Fatu and Caddy along with us to learn from the Sweedist dentists.

3. We are also very proud to have brought over the $8,500.00 worth of donated materials. I just found out that the clinic has been closed for almost 4 months because there was no anesthetic to treat patients. We brought 600 carpules and have already used almost 100.

4. While there are still many things to work on there is much hope. I'm more than happy with the ambition and drive these wonderful dental assistants possess and I can say with certainty that together we are really going to make a difference!

All for now... more to come.
N Ka Tale
(I'm going now)


Sunday, June 22, 2008

Summer Donation Information

If you are interested in donating dental/medical supplies to A Hand In Health this summer please contact:

Global House
(Joseph Barrett)
1302 NE 2nd St
Minneapolis, MN 55413

*Call Mr. Barrett to make an appointment at:
(612) 968-0333

Drop Off Hours:
10:00am-5:00pm Monday - Friday
10:00am-12:00pm Saturday
Closed Sunday

*Curbside parking is available for donation drop-off.

Thank you for your donation!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Washington DC

Good News:

I recently met with the Ambassador of The Gambia, Ambassador Jallow in Washington DC and he was very supportive of the donations and work of  A Hand In Health. We are in the process of an official endorsement from him and will be posting updates on the website. We also discussed shipping options for the $35,000 of donated material so far. So keep your fingers crossed that we will have success with the new connections! It is in the works to hopefully meet the Minister of Health and he is rumored to have ideas and connections that can help us with shipping. 

Fox News is in the process of verifying our information and we expect to have a 30 second piece running about A Hand In Health for the entire month of July. We will be the featured charity for this month so keep your eyes pealed and spread the word!

Bad News:

My computer crashed yesterday and I lost everything on the hard drive. So unfortunately all my documents for A Hand In Health were lost. BUT everything is backed up... just not here in NYC. So I have lots of work ahead of me and was pleasantly reminded of the wonderful challenges that present themselves right before international travel. :)

Departure date is in T- 3 days so the next update will be from Africa!
Until then....

Monday, June 9, 2008

2 Days and Counting!

And the count down begins! I can't believe there are only two days until lift off to New York!
Here's a quick update before my departure:

Recent developments:

-Picked up our dental chair today from West Lund Dental!
The chair is currently being stored at Global House in Minneapolis and waiting to be shipped to Gambia. Special thanks to the AMAZING Lift Kids volunteers who donated their time and brute strength to lift this VERY heavy chair!

-Packed over $8,000 in two suitcases and are ready to deliver much needed supplies

-Planned the Muunoo Smile Mission Send Off Party! Everyone is invited! 6pm Tuesday, June 10, Globalhouse, Located at 1302 NE 2nd St in Minneapolis.

-Finalized arrangements and am ready for an amazing trip!

Just want to send out a final thank you to all our donors, supporters, and friends! We couldn't have done this without you!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Muunoo Smile Mission Send Off Party June 10th

Dear Sponsors, Supporters, Friends, and Volunteers!

We are happily awaiting the departure of our first ever Muunoo Smile
Mission this June.
We cordially invite you to join us in a send off for our volunteer team!

Who: Friends, Family, Volunteers, and anyone who wants to come learn
about our project!
When: June 10th 2008 - 6:00pm - 9:00pm
Where: Global House
Speakers: Megan Meyer - President of A Hand In Health
Joseph Barrett - President of Lift Kids

***Pizza and refreshments will be provided.

Driving Directions:
Located at:
1302 NE 2nd St in Minneapolis we now have an event and work space open
to all. Please use the parking lot between the Firehouse and the
Minneapolis College of Photography (MCP) just West of 2nd Street on
13th Ave. Curbside parking is also available.
** For more information about Global House please visit:,en/

Please either reply to this e-mail or register online at:

We hope to see you there!

6 Days and Counting!

Just a few numbers to put things in perspective...

Departure date for New York: June 12th

Number of items packed: 0
Number of items on To Do list: 37
Number of people to visit in NY: 9
Number of days to finish everything, take the DAT, and finish applying to dental school: 6
Number of donations to somehow pack and get to Africa: $30,000 worth
Number of hours of sleep I get a night: ... no comment :)

...let the fun begin...