Dental Mission Angeles City, Philippines|Feb 10-18, 2012

Click here to watch MMFC’s  new 4 minute video 2012 MMFC Angeles City, Philippines .

MMFC sent a 13 member volunteer medical team to Angeles City from February 10-18, 2012 to work at the Dee Hwa Liong Foundation Medical Center, a private hospital owned by Timothy Paul llanos Dee and his family.  This was MMFC’s 3rd annual mission to Angeles City and it continues to grow in scope and impact each and every year. This year for the first time we conducted a dental clinic.

MMFC screened over 150 children, performed 51 surgical procedures (36 of which were cleft lip and/or palate) and ran a 3 day dental clinic led by Dr. Fortune Vardeman where we treated 144 patients. Our MMFC speech pathologist also worked with an astounding 56 patients. Of these, 20 patients received 45 minute – 1 hour long speech therapy sessions and 36 patients received pre-op speech/feeding evaluations with post-op visits and education.

It was an amazing effort by the entire volunteer team – way to go!

One of the in-country volunteers and alumni of HFA Batch 83, Emily Turla, spoke to the families of each of our patients to learn a little bit more about their lives, interests and hopes for the future. We would like to share some of their stories with you here.

Michael Vincent is in the second grade. He was left by his biological mother when he was only a month old. Luckily for Michael, he was adopted by July Rafael. July is a  hairdresser, dressmaker and caterer. Michael lovingly calls his adopted father “PAPA LY”.

July learned about the medical mission through a family friend who had seen an MMFC poster at the Holy Rosary Parish Church in Angeles City. Michael is excited to return to his family and school with his new “fixed lip”.

Dan Jimboy is the second of 2 children of Nicanor and Mary Grace Ledesma. His parents are separated. His mother is a teacher at Moncada, Tarlac.  Dan Jimboy finished his secondary education but refused to continue his college education because of his cleft palate condition. He had his cleft lip operation when he was only 8 months old.

They learned about the medical mission last 2011 through their neighbors who were patients then at Dee Hwa Liong while the 2011 medical mission was ongoing. They, however, weren’t able to make it to the surgical week. Thankfully they we able to make it this year. While Dan’s age prevents him from having a cleft palate surgery with a positive outcome, MMFC was able to repair his lip and fit him with an obturator that will help him with eating and speech. Dan now says he will consider attending college.

Jackilyn is a beautiful 9 year old cleft lip & palate patient from Candaba, Pampanga. She is the 2nd to the youngest of 11 children of Bong and Joselyn Estacio. She likes school and candy.

Sadly, her mother died 6 yrs ago from cervical cancer. Her father, BONG, buys and sells junk  or as we call it here “bakal-bote”.  Her older brothers also work to help their father support the family.  Jackilyn is presently under the care of of  Ms. Nerissa Gonzales, a family neighbour.

Both Jackilyn and her younger brother were born with cleft deformities. A couple of years ago, the family heard of a free cleft repair clinic and her younger brother was able to get the repair, but only one family member was able to go.  After their mother died of cancer six years ago, he was adopted by family friends.  a family friend who wasn’t able to have children.

Jackilyn’s caretaker, Ms. Gonzalez heard about this medical mission when it was announced at her church during services and told Jackilyn’s brother to bring her, and he did. Jackilyn’s brother said that she stays in a lot, only going out for school or quick errands but doesn’t like to go out much because of her cleft.  MMFC performed lip surgery on Jackilyn and is confident that her life will now change for the better.

Anthony is five years old and the youngest of 3 children of Lulu and Toto from Nueva Ecija. Angeline is 13 and their oldest. They earn a living as farmers.  Anthony, Angelina and their brother Bernardo have been MMFC patients since 2010. This is Anthony’s 3rd operation.  Angeline had a cleft lip operation in 2011 was fitted this year with an obturator.

Jhendel will soon be 2 years old. He is the second of 2 children of Jelsa, a single mom who works as a restaurant server/waitress. She has always been on a continuous look out for medical missions who can operate her son. She learned of MMFC medical mission through her relatives. She believes that Jhendel will now have the same opportunities as all other children.

John Lloyd is 6 months old and the second of 2 children of Jenny and Alvin Cunanan, both farmers from Nueva Ecija. They learned of the medical mission through their relatives, LULU and Augusto Dela Cruz, whose children Anthony, Bernardo and Angeline have been our patients since 2010.

Rafael is 3 months old and the youngest of 3 children of Peaches and Rommel. They learned about the medical mission through the PORAC HEALTH CENTER. His parents cannot believe how lucky Rafael is to receive this free surgery.

Ace is 19 years old and the second of 2 children of the late Dulsora and Verlyn Dudoc. HE hails from SAMAR province and travelled to Angeles City upon the advise of his aunt who resides  in Mountain View, Angeles City when she learned about the MMFC surgical mission. He wishes he had been able to get this surgery earlier in life, it would have made many things easier, but he is grateful to have been selected to receive the surgery this year.

Chan-Leo is 4 years old and the second of 2 children of Antonette, a single mom who works part time as laundry woman. Chan Leo had his lip repaired by MMFC in 2011 and returned this year to have his palate repaired.

Angel is almost 2 years old. She first had her lip operated on in April 7, 2010 (at only 1 month old) in Iloilo with another medical mission group.  After a week her wound opened up and has not healed well.

Her parents found out about MMFC’s when her Godmother had her medical check-up a Dee Hwa Liong Hospital and saw MMFC’s tarpaulin regarding the medical mission. Her mother is very grateful for MMFC and this surgery.

MMFC would like to thank our in-country volunteer and, in particular, Tim Dee, Fortune Vardeman, Judith Feliciano, Candy Ledesma, Dr. Canlan, the OR staff led by Carlos Ulysses Ramos and the Holy Family Academy Batch 83. We are also extremely grateful to our mission funders Dr. Lisa Molin, Foundation 14 and hundreds of loyal MMFC donors whose $10, $25 and $50 contributions ensured that this mission happened and that it was the success it deserved to be. We thank each of you for the part you played in bringing this much needed surgical care to some needy and very deserving Filipino children.