Prevention is better than cure. But what if you can't access either? Too poor to afford things like vitamins, fruits and vegetables—or routine doctor visits—families in poverty are left vulnerable against simple diseases, which can eventually threaten lives. Many in Asia also have never been taught basic health and hygiene principles, which puts their families at additional risk of disease.
Some of the most common diseases in Asia are curable—even preventable. But many are suffering and dying from these treatable ailments. A cold can develop into pneumonia. Burns go untreated. Diarrhea ravages both the young and elderly. Anemia weakens bodies. Headaches and other warning signals of greater ailments must be ignored.
GFA-supported medical ministry is helping thousands who are in need of medical attention, all while displaying the love of Christ.
Medical camps, a major aspect of GFA's supported medical ministry, bring skilled doctors, medical staff, medication and health training to areas where people rarely have the chance to see a doctor. These camps may be organized in Bridge of Hope centers, remote villages, crowded slums—any place there is need and opportunity. One camp typically serves anywhere from 200 to 1,000 children and adults. Local medical personnel are invited to serve at the camp, providing free pediatric and general health care, and eye checkups.
“In each of these camps, between 200 and 1,000 people are being helped with basic medical knowledge and needs. The GFA-supported medical camps are a huge impact to each of the communities, to help build up the community in health and wellness, because any nation that doesn’t have quality medical care really struggles.”
—Mike, GFA behind-the-scenes missionary
Our numbers represent the Lord’s work in 2019 through GFA and our partnerships worldwide as we follow Him in His work in 16 Asian nations, including Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Nepal.
Fever, eye disease, diarrhea, itching, colds, coughs, chickenpox, yellow fever, severe headaches, stomach problems, anemia and other diseases are frequently treated at medical camps. Patients with more serious issues, such as heart problems, gall stones or kidney failure, are given instructions for further tests and treatment.
The impact of a medical camp can go far beyond a checkup or a round of antibiotics. Parents and children learn how to protect themselves from disease, which can influence lives years later. Medical camps also address false beliefs and fears about medicine that often hinder the sick or pregnant from seeking medical help.
A healthier family means more time spent at work instead of on sickbeds, more money spent on food and education instead of on medicine, and more hope for the future instead of premature death. Medical ministry also provides an opportunity for national workers to pray for those who are ill and build relationships with communities.
Women face discrimination and difficulty in many corners of the world. GFA is giving opportunity and hope to women in Asia through critical healthcare training, literacy, and job-skills classes. Hear Jessi, a mom and behind-the-scenes missionary, share.
GFA workers teach free healthcare training to women in Asia, and last year, 315,332* women learned basic first aid, nutrition and other important information for their family’s health.
*This number represents the Lord’s work in 2019 through GFA and our partnerships worldwide as we follow Him in His work in 16 Asian nations, including Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Nepal.
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