For several years TCEF did Service Trips to various sites in India. This post was written by Valerie Hellerman, TCEF Program Manager at that time, who led the trip.
In 2014, a TCEF service trip journeyed to the remote Himalayan region, Zanskar. We were invited by the Himalayan Astro Medical Society to access the health care (or lack of) in the region.
TCEF built an addition to a teahouse to serve as a small clinic in the Lungnak Valley, one of the poorest regions of Zanskar. We did health assessments, first aid and began our relationship with the Amchis, the traditional healers.
The Dalai Lama was in Zanskar at that time and we were honored to have an audience with him. He told us”You must continue this work”
Next, we found ourselves at the Zanskar Community Health Project meeting and follow up meetings with co chair Lama Geshe Yonten(Journey to Zanskar movie).
The Dalai Lama Fund granted the committee funds to build a hospital for both western and traditional medicnes in Padum, the district center of Zanskar. The structure is complete and the plan is to open this hospital in June 2016. The TCEF service team has been tasked with arranging the first medical camps, educating health care workers and setting up the hospital. Members of the medical service team went to India in Nov to meet with members of the committee and clarify the tasks at hand.
TCEF is teaming with the Global Midwives Education Project ( from Livingston, Montana) to educate village midwives and open maternity beds at the hospital. A longtime TCEF supporter GYN Doctor ( from Great Falls, Montana) will be doing cervical cancer screening and an Urgent Care Doctor ( from Helena, Montana) will be screening for heart problems in children and doing general health screening.
Paula Thiede, head nurse on many medical service trips is preparing curriculums based on the Indian healthcare system to teach health care workers. We are also working with Dr Kalsang a Tibetan Doctor to assure collaboration with the traditional Amchi healers.
The people here still need help. We need to assist with purchasing some medical supplies, medications and we need to purchase a portable ultrasound to aid in the diagnosis of abdominal, heart, lung and obstetrical conditions.
Please consider a donation to this amazing project, supported by H.H. the Dalai Lama. Please tell your friends about this project THE NEED IS SO GREAT!
We also need donations of medical supplies ; bandages, stethescopes, BP machines, tape, thermometers, SUNGLASSES, eyeglasses, toothbrushes etc