Mrs Gerit Erlinger(on the rights ) and Ms Schomann (on the left).
During her holidays, German dentist Mrs. ERLINGER treated children in Cambodia for free. She and her daughter were happy to help even if they faced a lot of difficulties while they were completing a mission.
After cooperating with the Plan International which raised funds to help Cambodian children get an education three to four years ago (2018-2022), Mrs. ERLINGERN and her daughter got inspired to do more research about Cambodia with the aims to help to treat Cambodia’s Kids. After that they found out that some children in Cambodia have financial problems. They can’t even get education and have no home. Therefor, Mrs. ERLINGER discussed with her daughter and decided to come to Cambodia during her holidays to help some kids to get dental treatment. After preparing the trip during the last year, she and her daughter finally arrived in Cambodia in August 2023 for 2 weeks.
“I checked different countries and found out that Cambodia is very poor. When I came to this city (Phnom Penh) it seemed as complicated as we imagined before. Some children have nothing and live on the streets and it is not possible for them to get treatment from doctors. I think it is difficult for them, so it is important to come and treat them for free.” Mrs. ERLINGER said.
She and her daughter were, telling Women’s Radio about the difficulties they have faced during a their mission to take care of dental health of Cambodia’s kids under the patronage of an organization called MINIMOLA Cambodia, located at Wat Ang Pothyan, Sangkat Stung Meanchey, Phnom Penh. The problems such as the lack of medical facilities, the lack of equipment, and hard to follow the weather here.
“We face dizziness and help some patients who seem unwell, it might be because of the weather is too hot, so we have to get them to sit outside and wait for them to recover. If in Germany we had a way to deal with the hot weather like this situation, it would not be as difficult as here, so I think it is hard for us as doctors to see patients waiting in the hot weather, which will affect their wellbeing, and it hurts us when there are not many patients here.” ERLINGER’s daughter explained.
Even the two faced some problems that made it difficult to complete their mission both of them never wanted to give up. Instead, she and her daughter plan to return to Cambodia next year, in 2024. In addition to sacrificing personal time and patience to treat children free of charge, she and her daughter help buy scarce equipment to supplement the treatment room.
However, she and her daughter, including the team of Minimola Cambodia also explain the reason why some children missed the chance to come to get treatment because they do not know about Minimola Cambodia and the information on dental health treatment is not yet widespread.
“Last week we went to a community school and examined 68 students. The next day, we went to the local area to check and clean up the children’s teeth. We also asked some of the children and students about accessing free medical information, and nearly 100% of them stated they were unaware of the program and also didn’t know who Minimola Cambodia’s partner is. As a result, getting this free care is quite difficult for them.” Mrs. ERLINGER said.
Her assistant, a female dentist from Minimola Cambodia, expressed her feelings and admiration for the encouragement of the two German dentists, the mother, and the child.
“Yeah! She spend a lot money, she paid for staff, bought us a lot of equipment. So, we are happy to have them here to help some kids get treatment”, the female dentist said.
After having known Cambodia and having the experience of completing her mission to help treat kids’ dental health over the past 2 weeks, she and her daughter have a vision to cooperate with relevant partners to make it more relevant. She wants to provide general knowledge about dental health care, as well as strengthening the professional skills of doctors, teach them about the equipment needed and also wants to improve the atmosphere in the treatment room.
The two German dentists and the team of Minimola Cambodia