Update On Patricia

Patricia and Rose arrived at the Provincial General Hospital where we had booked her for registration to the patient support center at 9.30am.  At this point she was completely different from yesterday because she had her hair cut, she was bathed and in clean new clothes.  A confirmatory HIV test was done through P.I.T.C (Provider Initiated Testing and Counseling).  She was taken for history to be taken by the Clinical Officer. From her severe emaciation, the clinical officer recommended patient examination for a couple of days before she is allowed to go back home.  At the in-patient care she will be checked for CD4 count, liver and other organ functions; a complete examination.  Rose is staying with her until the evening.  After the evening hospital meal she will leave for home.  She will make a visit tomorrow to change her bedding which is not done by the nurses there, she will also ensure patricia gets her medicine and is attended to during hospital rounds.  A group therapy was done for Rose on behalf of Patricia which will help her overcome any trauma that may come with taking care of Patricia.  Rose will give me (Maurice) a daily report on the progress while she is in the hospital.  Myself, Josh, and other social workers will also make periodic visits to check on the progress both at home and in the hospital.


Patricia was put on I.V infusion without struggle as we had thought.  The doctor prescribed Oxybral.  Josh was able to facilitate this purchase.  The most urgent supply that was needed today included the following  sanitary towels for Patricia, pampers to ease cleaning on Patricia,  dental disinfectant for her septic woulds & surgical gloves for Rose's protection during cleaning.  All the above were bought with the help of Josh and delivered to the hospital.  A significant improvement could be noticed as Patricia became more active and social to the other ward mates, a lot of smiling was noticed even by the doctor during services Admirable note Rose was able to get to the Hospital by 6.00am to do early cleaning of Patricia before the nurses came for there rounds.  We thank God for her.  May God bless all this work.

Best regards,

Community VCT Worker at the Clinic

Putting My Nursing Skills To Use

Sat, 23 Jul 2011

There are a lot of things that make this trip hard and heartbreaking but at the same time there is so much that I am able to see that make this trip so awesome. Meeting the Patricia's make it hard but on Thursday I had a patient that was 2 1/2 and I was the only one in the office.  I was able to assess the patient, send him to the lab for testing.  The diagnosis was malaria, and I prescribed meds for the patient. Of course I had to have a translator and made a call about the meds but it felt so good especially only having been here a few weeks.  Yesterday was not a fun day for me. I got food poisoning and was either in bed or the bathroom all day but am feeling much much better today. I am taking cipro just incase it wasn't food poisoning. Hope you all have a good day and I will be posting two updates about Patricia here shortly...

Too Far Gone To Save

Thu, 21 Jul 2011

Hello everyone.   Today was a good and relaxing day which is exactly what i needed after these last two days. On Tuesday I read a message from Julie Rawlins regarding a lady that was HIV+ that some of the team had met when they were all here. Apparently she was laying on the floor and they thought that there may have been some human waste on the ground next too her. Julie asked me to look into it a little further because the lady that was suppose to be taking care of her wasn't and Julie had some people that wanted to comfort her because everyone felt that she was too far gone to save so they wanted her to die with dignity. I talked to Maurice about it because he's the one that knows all the HIV people and he knew exactly who i was talking about. Her name is Patricia and he said she is very very sick I also let Maurice know that Julie wanted me to pay someone to take care of Patricia. Again he knew exactly who to talk to her name is Rose. I told Maurice I wanted to meet Rose and Patricia today. He made the calls and setup a meeting for 2 pm. When we arrived nothing could prepare me for what I was about to see. Half of the home that Patricia was living in was demolished. Then when we went inside we could see that part of the roof had caved in. When we approached a room on our left we found Patricia laying on the floor naked and covered in dirt and human excrement. She was laying on a bamboo mat of sorts. We stayed for a few minutes and then left. We went and discussed what we needed to do and put that plan into action. We got her some clothes and stuff to wash her. I sent Rose back to bath her and clothe her. On Wednesday we took Patricia to the hospital and she looked better then she did on Tuesday. She was clean had clothes on and even had a hair cut. We spent almost all day at the hospital but at the end of the day she was admitted for care. The hospital makes me think of a hospital from the 1920's or something. There are 6 people to a room and all the rooms are open to the outside air. When we took Patricia up to her room we had to carry her and her wheelchair up 2 flights of stairs. I was just shocked about the hospital.  I edited this story there are a lot of details that were left out but if you want more detail i am happy to oblige. I just didn't feel that everyone would want all the graphic details.  Hope you all have a good day and i will keep you all updated as i get updated.

Back In Kisumu

Sat, 16 Jul 2011

Hello all.  Things are good and its great to be back in Kisumu. On Tuesday, the last day the CRF team was here, we went to Samabul which is a little town way out in the sticks.  Its about 50 kilometers from Eldoret. Right now they are working on raising the money to build a clinic. Currently a person must travel up 40 kilometers to get to a clinic or hospital. They have a lot of people, especially pregnant women, that make the journey, several of whom die on their way. They have raised 80,000 ksh and need about 3 million ksh. We left samabul just in time because as soon as we hit the paved road again we had torrential downpour and the roads to Samabul are all dirt.

We headed to Francis' house for dinner and for a surprise birthday party for Dr. Jones birthday. Afterwards we all headed back to the guest house to pack and get ready to leave the following morning.  On Wednesday I saw the team off to the airport and then went and had breakfast while waiting for Francis to come back and get me. He took me to the school and I did all the updates I could and such and then we went to POA place which is a small little wildlife look around... The animals are in cages and such but it was nice to see the animals I finally got onto a Matatu for the 2 hour trek back to Kisumu. 

Once I arrived I headed over to Jared's house where I will be staying for a while if not the rest of my time here. We had dinner and then he had to go to a meeting so I visited with his wife and then went to bed. I didn't have any power last night for my CPAP but I fixed that today.  

Today was work at the clinic for a little bit and then out into the field to do the VCT which is counseling and testing for HIV. We do this every week. Tomorrow should be a nice light day. I am just going to be working around the clinic and trying to get some stuff taken care of.  Well thats all for tonight...

Let The Fundraising Begin

     Hey Joshua, Milton asked me to send you a digital copy of our Kisumu clinic story. Please find it attached. I hope that it will help you in raising funds to move there this summer. I'm also attaching quite a few photos that you may find helpful. Most are of the VCT and Clinic. I have a few of people receiving treatment and then some water and sanitation training in a local church. Please let me know if you need a better description of any of the photos. I will be sending another email with more photos. In the meantime, check out our promo video

Andrew Brown
Christian Relief Fund

An Open Door...

Hello what an impressive CV you got. I have just looked at it and I believe it would worth giving a try. Your effort seems tremendous. Anyway i must take the responsibility for having taken a bit of awhile to respond been held up a little bit. Now if you are coming for a short time like you are talking about about then what we have suggest is to stay with one of us in his house then you get to work every morning and be back in the evening with a car at your disposal when you are ready then we feel it would about $300 each month for the three months for the dinner and accommodation. If this is okay so we think the short term it would be worth it. Or what do you think? You can get back to me on that too. Also you got to be ready to walk on foot around in community care outreach services in the slum area where we are situated and its environs. Also tell me when you are planning to come and for how long you are ready to stay around. We also do medical camps and probably on some weekend we would take you to the orphanage home to work there. Hoping to here from you soon for a strategy drawing and the action plan. God bless you so much and we say in swahili karibu kisumu to mean welcome to kisumu


The Beginning...

Good day Mr. Thomas

     My name is Joshua Farnsworth and am a friend of Dr. Milton Jones of the Christian Relief Fund. Currently I am coming to the end of my second semester in a BSN nursing program here in Belton Texas. I feel that the Lord has been calling my wife and I to missions, I feel that Kenya is the country that the Lord has put on my heart. In my talks with Dr. Jones and my desire to work with people in a medical perspective with a Christian emphasis has lead me to you. I have attached my resume that will show you my past experience and I am happy to discuss more with you all that I have learned during this semester of clinical's. If there is a need for me to come this summer I would love to be able to if the Lord opens the door and provides the finances. I am done with school and available to go on or after June 1st and then return on or around the 1st of August. If there is a need could you please provide me with the information of where I would live, how much it would cost to live, and how much total money I would need while I am there. I look forward to hearing back from you and if it doesn't work our this summer then we will have to discuss the need for next summer.

Thank you and God Bless


How It All Began

It all started with an email to Dr. Jones in March of 2011.  I have known Dr. Milton Jones for years, as he was one of my college professors during my time at Puget Sound Christian College in the late 90's.  In the email I told him I was in nursing school and that I was interested in medical missions work.  I left it at that. I never told him I was feeling called to Kenya to serve the sickest of the sick and the poorest of the poor.  While emailing back and forth Dr. Jones mentioned Kisumu; a city in Kenya that is one of the most diseased cities in the world.  I was blown away!  I felt like the Lord had smacked me upside the head and said, here you go.  Three months and seven days from the first email I sent to Dr. Jones, I was fully funded to go Kisumu Kenya to do medical missions work.  It was an amazing moment when I got the call saying all my funds had come in.  Earlier in the day I had received a call informing me I was still $2500 short and that I wasn't going to be able to go.  I was very disappointed but understood that God's timing is perfect.  He called me, and He would send me in His time.  That evening I received another call.  But this time the call was to let me know an anonymous donation had come in for the exact amount of funds I was lacking!  That night I was on the phone with my travel agent, booking my tickets and getting everything ready to go.  I was in utter shock that someone believed in me and God's call on my life, so much that they were moved to generously donate exactly what I needed!!!  The next few days were a bit of a dream for me as I prepared to travel half way around the world to Kisumu, Kenya for a month and a half.  My first medical mission to Kenya marks the beginning of NWAP, and will always be cherished in my heart and soul as a door flung wide open by God.

Nursing School Application Essay

     Several significant events in my life have impacted my decision and calling to become a nurse.  I have been told time and again by friends, family, and fellow employees that I am very empathetic and naturally able to connect with and care for others especially those incapable of caring for themselves.  January 26, 2006, my aunt suffered a massive a stroke.  I did not hesitate to make the six-hour drive to the hospital she was being treated in.  For the next five weekends I stayed by my aunts side, paying close attention to the care she received.  During this time, two of my uncles (one, an RN for 25 years) were observing the way I handled my aunt and dealt with the doctors, nurses, and certified nursing assistants. Much to my surprise, they offered to pay for two terms of schooling in nursing, physical therapy, or some other type of healthcare, in response to their feeling that I was made for this type of work.  And so my passion for nursing began.  Before accepting their generous offer, I felt I should first try my hand at healthcare to see if their feeling was accurate.  My first experience in healthcare involved working at an Alzheimers facility for three months.  My next step was in-home healthcare, which I did for a little over two years.  Sure enough, I found that my uncles were right about me; I was created to take care of people.  Since that time in my life, I have put all my energy into preparing for a career and ministry in healthcare. In the recent past I had the pleasure of working at a plasma donation center in Eugene, OR.  Working in a different venue proved to be very educational and inspiring.  On occasion I was faced with individuals who were alive only because of the benefits that plasma donation provides.  Knowing I was doing my part to develop resources that provided life saving medications for countless individuals, was a constant reminder of how significant each role in the medical field truly is.  This type of responsibility pushes me to embrace only the highest standards in every task I put my hands to.  In December 2008, I was given the opportunity to participate in a missions trip deep into the jungles of Costa Rica.  Our team ran a children's camp for orphans and children from single parent, poverty stricken homes.  The look on the camp directors face was thanks enough for the large amount of medical supplies donated from my place of work.  The lack of available healthcare in some of the poorest parts of Costa Rica is still fresh in mind.  While there, my desire to participate in medical missions became the passion that is fueling my efforts to become a nurse.  Currently, my number one goal is to complete the necessary requirements for my nursing degree.  With that degree it is my hearts desire to engage in long-term medical missions within the areas of the world that are experiencing great poverty, low quality of life, and a lack of access to Christian resources.  It is my life long goal to use my nursing skills in response to The Great Commission: And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, "All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." Amen (Matthew 28:18-20).  It is my personal belief that whatever I do to the least the sickest, the poorest I do unto Christ, Himself.  I believe wholeheartedly that nursing is the door that will allow me to share Christ's love among the poverty stricken nations of the world. Gods love is most effectively communicated through actions, not just words.  Nursing is the best way for me to demonstrate Gods love.  With this truth in mind, I have purposed to live my life by the following motto: "Preach the gospel at all times... If necessary, use words." -Saint Francis of Assisi-