On August 22 and 23, 2013, more than 200 people gathered in Nairobi, Kenya, for the first-ever African-hosted Global Medical Health Conference (GMHC Africa). Hosting the conference on African soil fulfilled the vision of Dr. Florence Muindi and the LIA international board, in partnership with Southeast Christian Church of Louisville, KY, USA.
Representatives gathered from 17 countries in Africa and around the world to learn from prominent speakers in four plenary and 20 breakout sessions—all designed to inspire and educate participants in how health care can complement the fulfillment of the Great Commission. Conspicuous in the attendees were a significant number of medical students who were actively discerning God’s call on their lives.
At the close of the conference, Dr. Muindi acknowledged the prayerful and dedicated service of the steering committee that included: Dr. Charlie Vittitow, Dr. Peter Okaalet, Dr. Stephen Muhudhia, Dr. Girma Begashaw, Bruce Dahlman and James Gatere. She also gave sincere thanks to Southeast Christian Church who provided sacrificial financial and prayer support for the event.
Founded in 1995, the Global Mission Health Conference (GMHC) is a ministry of Southeast Christian Church (SECC) whose members desire to cast a vision for health care missions. Professionals and missions-minded leaders have gathered each year to explore the Lord’s vision of medical missions around the world. In 2011, SECC launched MedicalMissions.com to provide learning resources and to showcase these unique opportunities. The website now equips nearly 100,000 individuals per year.
Dr. Muindi adds, “Holding the Global Missions Health on African soil fulfills a vision from the Lord. We had a strong sense of God’s presence throughout the two days of the conference. It was manifested in the powerful teaching sessions. Equally important were the vigorous and intentional conversations that filled the hallways and common spaces in between scheduled events, as people from various nations and backgrounds engaged one another in networking, discerning God’s purposes and advancing this important idea. When we do things that agree with God’s heart, in His timing, we can expect Him to show up in a mighty way. And that’s just what we experienced!”
Plans for future Global Health Missions Conferences and related events can be seen on MedicalMissions.com, and are announced on LIA’s website.
The latest issue of Beyond Relief is out now! This time, we focus on LIA’s efforts to empower churches to serve the world’s most vulnerable, children.
Learn more about:
- LIA’s work to serve vulnerable children through the local church
- Stories of transformation
- Updates on the countries where LIA serves
- Insight from Dr. Muindi about LIA’s efforts to serve vulnerable children
- Latest LIA news
Read it now.
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Paul Mwaura has served as an intern on the LIA team this summer in the Arizona office. He is a sophomore at King’s College in New York. Coincidentally, Paul is Kenyan and moved with his family to the US when he was nine, so our work particularly resonates with him.
He plays an integral role in keeping the office running smoothly and supporting engagement efforts. His tasks range from processing merchandise orders (if you purchased Konjos recently, chances are they were packaged and shipped by him!), coordinating the office inventory, creating a manual for volunteers and various research.
Before Paul heads back to New York next week for school, we asked him if he could share about his experience as an LIA intern:
What did you learn about poverty and community development?
Paul: Poverty is a very complex issue that cannot be solved by simply giving. Alleviating poverty requires time and commitment from both the community and those offering help. An interesting thing I learned was the discrepancy between how the poor view poverty. Many of us who are more well-off view poverty as a lack of material things, but it goes much deeper than that.
What does your typical day as an intern look like?
Paul: As an intern, I work to support the entire office with daily tasks. When I walk into the office in the morning, the first thing I do is look at my daily tasks list, which can include processing merchandise orders, research, mailings, running errands, managing inventory, leadership development studies, etc. Each day looks different.
What’s one thing you’ve learned that you’ll carry with you after your internship?
Paul: The most important thing I can take away from my time at LIA is the opportunity that I was given to learn more about myself and what I wanted to do with my life. I had an idea before, but working at LIA helped me not only refine my goals but also understand why I wanted to do it and whether I was capable of it.
Part of the internship includes leadership development. What did that look like for you?
Paul: The leadership development involved my doing three informational interviews with professionals in the field I want to pursue, in addition to lots of reading that helped me figure out what I wanted for my future.
How has your internship impacted your career growth and future goals?
Paul: Before joining LIA, I was really struggling with my plans for the future. It wasn’t a struggle of what I wanted to do, but more of a spiritual struggle about the ethics and morals of what I wanted to do (work in the financial industry). The bible talks a lot about the dangers of chasing money, but chasing money is what moves the financial industries. From the outside, it almost seems like it’s a race to see who can be greedier. I’ve learned that it’s okay to want to be successful and that doesn’t have to translate to greed. It’s a sign of God’s blessings and what He is capable of doing. The key thing to remember is that it’s not what you have, but what you do with what you have. I’m going into the financial field not only to accomplish my goals, but to also to be in position that will enable me to have a positive impact on many more lives than I do now.
What has been your overall experience as an LIA intern?
Paul: I’ve loved working at LIA. I never knew interning could be so fulfilling. I looked forward to coming to work because every day was a new experience. I grew up a lot in these few months. Knowing that my work was helping others made it even more special. I learned to appreciate life and what God has given me. I’m grateful to have had this opportunity.
What was your favorite project? Why?
Paul: My favorite project to work on was the volunteer manual. At first I didn’t think I would be able to write and organize a whole manual. Now the manual is done and I know it will be very helpful to LIA.
What would you say to those considering applying for an LIA internship?
Paul: I would differently recommend that they do it before someone else does. Believe me, it’s not an opportunity you want to give up!
Internships openings for Fall 2013 are now open. Visit the careers page to learn more.
On September 26, we will host our annual benefit reception in Louisville, Kentucky.
Don’t miss out on this opportunity to connect with the LIA leadership team, rejoice in the work that God has enabled, and hear about future developments with the ministry.
This year, there are two ways to attend:
- Sponsor the event — which includes 8 admissions to the reception, 2 tickets to the private pre-event with LIA founding president/CEO, Dr. Muindi, and recognition in the printed program
- Buy individual tickets — includes admission, refreshments and hors d’oeuvres for one
Space is limited so don’t wait to reserve your spot!
Check out a highlight video from last year’s reception: