DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., March 28, 2019 – Employees at AdventHealth Daytona Beach joined with the Daytona Beach Seventh-day Adventist Church to embark on a mission trip to Africa.
From Feb. 28 to March 15, the AdventHealth Daytona Beach medical team cared for thousands during medical clinics in the villages throughout Kenya.
“The need for medical care in the community was overwhelming. In my 27 years of nursing, these were some of the worst cases I had ever seen,” said Linda Misko, a registered nurse and director of education for AdventHealth Daytona Beach. “Our team cared for patients with terrible wounds, with maggots and worms. Many had extremely high fevers of over 104 degrees and there were so many underdeveloped children. We also encountered some extremely unique conditions, including gigantism and congenital backward legs. The team did our best to offer treatments and comforts to the community, making a difference in countless lives through medical services and intervention.”
The mission work also extended beyond health care.
While abroad, a construction team worked on the Kiutine Seventh-day Adventist School, a boarding school with over 200 secondary students.
“The team helped build a new cafeteria for the school,” said Misko. “Their food would be covered in dirt, as there wasn’t a clean place for the kids to sit and eat. Now, they have a building with furniture, doors and windows to eat in each day. It can also be used for school and other functions as needed. Their current kitchen is literally a small shack with a simple fire used to make food in large bowls. There is a local team there now working to finish this portion of the project.”
Thanks to the generous donations from AdventHealth Daytona Beach employees and family members, as well as community partners such as Walgreens Store #3814 in Ormond Beach, the manager of the Dollar Tree in Palm Coast, and various hospital vendors, the hospital gave the locals sunglasses, eyeglasses, toothbrushes, toothpaste, as well as suitcases full of clothes and toys.
“Our time in Kenya was an incredible, amazing and humbling experience that truly made a difference in countless lives,” concluded Misko.
While the team was there, they realized the top contributing factor to most all of the health problems the villagers faced is a lack of clean water.
“At the community wells, you have thousands of people going there every day, trying to get water. People ranging from an 80-year-old elderly woman to 6-year-old children have to walk more than 30 miles each day to visit a well and then carry water home in heavy containers, causing terrible back pain,” Misko said. “Seeing this for ourselves, we wanted to do more to help and we are already planning another trip back to Kenya to build a well.”
Darla Fish, a registered nurse and executive director of cardiovascular services at AdventHealth Daytona Beach, was a volunteer in this year’s mission trip and is leading the charge on the next efforts for a new well.
“Water is the source of life. So many of us take it for granted that when we turn the faucet on, we can fill our cups, wash our clothes, cook our food, flush our toilets, take a bath, fill our swimming pools and our fish tanks. That is a luxury that most Kenyans will never know, or even be able to dream about. What we take for granted is a true luxury for them,” Fish said. “Safe water should not be a luxury. We can provide a well that will hydrate, nourish, cleanse, develop sustainability and provide hope to the children and families of the community.”
To learn more about the recent trip, click here.
To support AdventHealth Daytona Beach’s effort to build a new well for the remote villages of Kenya, email [email protected].
About AdventHealth Daytona Beach
AdventHealth Daytona Beach has 359-beds and is one of the six hospitals in Flagler, Lake and Volusia counties that composes the AdventHealth Central Florida Division - North Region. Formerly known as Florida Hospital Memorial Medical Center, the organization’s parent company changed the name of all wholly-owned entities to AdventHealth on Jan. 2, 2019. Based in Altamonte Springs, AdventHealth is a connected system of care. With more than 80,000 team members, AdventHealth is one of the nation’s largest faith-based health care systems with nearly 50 hospitals and hundreds of care sites in nearly a dozen states. With the mission of Extending the Healing Ministry of Christ, AdventHealth Daytona Beach provides whole person care to heal the body, mind and spirit. For more information about AdventHealth Daytona Beach, visit AdventHealthDaytonaBeach.com.