Life-Changing Surgery

In 2008, following my first visit to the Philippines with a team from our church, I asked International Needs Australia to instigate a project to help disadvantaged children to obtain medical aid which their families could not afford and, without which, they would remain disadvantaged for the rest of their lives. I had been introduced to Joshua, an 18 month old boy with a cleft lip and palate and decided that I should do something to get this child the surgery he needed to rectify his condition. We decided to call the project “Project Joshua” and, in the past four years, Joshua’s lip and palate has been corrected and the project has changed the lives of thirteen children and their families.

It was in January 2009 when the team from One Community Church were assisting at a medical mission in the village of Nasisi, City of Ligao, that I noticed Linda Cameron feeding a young boy with a banana. I was curious to know why he needed to be fed and joined Linda to find out why. As I got near to the table where they were seated, I could see that both of his hands were so severely deformed that he could not use them for any practical purpose.

Pastor Choi had joined me and said “We don’t know what to do for him,” to which I replied, “I can try to help him with Project Joshua funds.” I eventually contacted a hand surgeon at the Philippines General Hospital and she agreed to operate on Jomar’s hands; he now has a pincer grip in both hands and his life has been transformed. His mother has now become a very willing worker in Pastor Choi’s church.

The Lord took me to the Philippines in 2008 for a purpose and He has continued to expand that purpose each year since. It is no coincidence that he brings these children to me for me to facilitate their recovery, praise the Lord!

by Alan Birkett (member One Community Church)