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New Year's tale from Bangladesh. A message of love.


Dear Friends,
we have as guests at the moment, here in Dhaka, 14 members of the team of Interethnos-Interplast Italy, a non profit organisation of volunteers, completely self financed.
Plastic surgeons, anaesthesiologists, emergency room and intensive care nurses, they perform missions in developing countries, operating, completely free of charge, whoever is in need.

Serious body deformity, acute burns, sequela of acid attack, cancer, facial trauma, and hideous wounds…the range of pathology in these countries is endless.
And the team members spend their holidays treating them all…

This is the 20th year they come to Bangladesh, arriving from Italy fully equipped, sutures, bandages, medications, anaesthesia equipment, surgical instruments, perfect organisation, staying with us 2 weeks.

8.00 AM in the hospital, the Dhaka Medical College, an ocean of pain and sorrow, surrounded by hundreds of patients, who have been alerted by an advertisement on the local newspapers.
Operating whole day, one patient after the other, till 11.00 PM, then back home, dinner, spend some time together, and next morning start again.

When they come home at night they are exhausted, some times depressed, emotionally shaken, after again another encounter with the terribly sad realities of this part of the world.
But they go ahead, strong in their knowledge of doing something unique.

I have seen them treating women destroyed by acid, where the only hope is to bring some functional emprovement, and a bit of resemblance to a human being.
And the many children with cleft lip, a small operation, or cleft palate, a bigger operation, and their life’s are changed. Then they get clothes, shoes, and toys from Italy, hugs, kisses, smiles, love!
And all the other patients that crowd the hospital, deformed, burned, bombed, electrocuted….to all is offered the hope for a normal life.

May be I am boring you.
Must confess that I am already dreading the moment of their departure, end of this week, when our house will be empty of their enthusiasm, of their professionalism, of their sorrow, of their joy…….of that subtle, mouldy, putrefying smell of hospital that permeates their clothes, them, and naturally our furniture……

But may be you are interested. Then please go and visit them at Protected content
(still mostly in Italian, unfortunately, but enough to understand)

Would love to hear your opinion.
If you reached this far, thank you for your attention.

A small amendment.
This thread was not posted to get personal compliments, but to introduce this small, but deserving group of volunteers, and the work they are doing.
My (not so secret) hope is that somewhere, in the big IN community, some members might find that in the country were they live, there is the possibility of a mission, with local support. Or other members might decide to help them, in any way.

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