Samburu Dental Clinic: Day 3 & 4

The Safari Collection recently collaborated in organising the first ever mobile dental clinic in the Westgate Samburu Community. As the below comments show, it was a remarkable few days of love and kindness all round. Here are the diary highlights from day 3 and 4 of the memorable week.

By Ali Allport

DAY 3

No two days are ever the same in Samburu… and today brought new surprises.

Nicola and Scarlet treated a day-old baby in the village and we met up with Larry and Ajol – two little boys born with congenital cataracts who we treated at the first eye mission and who now have good vision. They continue to have hearing problems, highlighting the importance of having an ENT specialist here at the next medical clinic.

The clinic was buzzing today and we even saw a couple of VIP’s – David is a member of the Grevy’s Zebra Trust team and Shivani from Ewaso Lions earned her “I’m a Cleaner Beamer sticker”!

This week, the local Clinical Officer, Phyllis, has dewormed, given Vit A and we immunised all children under the age of 12, which is a huge boost to the school food program that we sponsor.

DAY 4

More surprises today… and not just for us. A pregnant lady was more than a little overwhelmed to discover that in less than two weeks she will be giving birth to not just one but two babies!

We saw our oldest dental patient yet at 88 years old, who was delighted to have two painful teeth removed. Its hard to imagine how these communities deal with having no access to dental care and living with debilitating tooth ache. I have never seen people so happy to sit in the dental chair and have their teeth removed.

the oldest patient yet

The oldest patient yet. Delighted to be free of his terrible toothache.

The children enjoyed learning to use their tooth brushes and Clare the dentist came up with the fantastic idea: Why not teach the Ewaso Lions Warriors how to demonstrate tooth care and hygiene, the children look up to and respect the warriors and are more likely to listen and learn from them.

If we are able to arrange a bulk importation of tooth brushes and toothpaste, they could distribute and teach at the same time.

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Hiram was ecstatic to finally be able to don his gloves and surgically remove a splinter from a warrior’s eye. He also met up with a little boy who we sent to Nairobi early this year to have both lacrimal glands unblocked – he has had a super outcome and no longer has streaming tears down his face and gunky eyes all the time.

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We also saw an old man who was operated on at the last eye mission and who now has perfect sight in the right eye and would like to have his left eye operated on.

So much has happened and I cant believe tomorrow is the final day. It’s been an unbelievably rewarding experience for everyone involved and a privilege to be a part of something so good.

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