As you probably know, I am nearing the end of my physical therapy school journey. Tyler and I never thought this day would come but in 6 short months, I will be Dr. Kelsey Gann, or as Tyler would say, “Dr. Ma’am”. Before this journey comes to an end for me, I have the honor and privilege of embarking on a once in a lifetime opportunity to go on a pediatric rotation in Malawi, Africa.
Malawi, Africa is the second poorest country in the world. There is a doctor associated with my school that takes osteopathic medicine students in the first two months of each year during Malawi’s malaria season to help treat adults and children affected by malaria as well as other diseases. This doctor and his wife, Dr. and Mrs. Podgore, have a home there that is on a hospital’s ground that is protected by high fence and armed guards so all who go to stay with them are safe. The doctor realized a few years ago that he was saving children and babies from malaria but unfortunately, the malaria often affects their brains before they are healed. This leaves lasting effects similar to cerebral palsy. After cured of malaria, these kids were being sent back to their villages with debilitating physical deformities and disabilities. Dr. Podgore soon realized that he needed to do something about the lasting effects of the malaria so he helped to establish this rotation with my school so that these precious children and their families could have better functioning lives.
Myself and five other girls from my school will be travelling to Malawi at the end of February 2018 in order to provide physical therapy services to these children, as well as some adults, who are affected by malaria and other diseases that cause physical disabilities for four weeks. As you may expect, this trip comes with many expenses. I have written this letter to ask for financial help so that I may take part in this life-changing experience. I know that this rotation will be eye-opening to other parts of God’s creation and will be spiritually challenging knowing that many of these people do not know our Lord. I took part in this experience so that I could expand my knowledge of my field and of the world in which we live. I also did so to challenge myself to get out of my comfort zone and cushioned life to see and help those that are less fortunate that we are as God’s people and as Americans.
Any donation, no matter how small, will help me in this adventure and will be GREATLY appreciated from both Tyler and myself. I love all of you and thank you for the part that you have played in my journey to get where I am today. Whether you are able to help financially or not, I covet your prayers most for a safe journey for all involved, that we are able to help many children (and adults!), and that we let our lights shine in a dark place.