Life-Saving Dentistry

Some amazing people visited the Village Hopecore family in Chogoria last month. Kathy Sangster and Richard and Kris Mungo spent five weeks in the village, performing dental exams.

Richard P. Mungo, DDS MSD Med, reports back: “We actually saw over 250 children and 50 adults. Some of the patients were hospital patients who needed assistance … We were happy to help the hospital dental staff; they were very helpful to us.

“My wife, Kris, and I had a wonderful time in Chogoria. KK is an amazing gentleman. I feel I learned a great deal from him. His kindness, sincerity and true love of his people was overwhelmingly admired by us.”

But that wasn’t all the trio was able to accomplish during their visit. They partnered with Colgate-Palmolive in Nairobi so they could hand out toothbrushes and toothpaste on their visits to local schools, where they gave a course in dental hygiene.

Kathy Sangster had high praise for Dr. Mungo. “He made up a book of all the children when they were coming in for dentistry. He had all the right stuff so it didn’t hurt. He had something funny and humorous to say to all the kids. He told the girls that he was working on their ‘movie star smiles’.”

She had been to Chogoria before. She said she saw some real improvements in the standard of living of those who were receiving microloans from Village Hopecore, “More people are able to do more things; they weren’t as needy as the time before. Before some couldn’t feed their families. This time they were better dressed, they could afford medical care for their children. They still have a lot of needs, but there wasn’t the sheer desperation we saw before.”

All three agree that the trip was extremely satisfying. Dr. Mungo says, “We would certainly contemplate a return trip. I feel that I have a much better understanding of what we can do for the children and this knowledge will alter what we bring next time—thus making our travels much easier…

“Village  Hopecore is an outstanding organization… I will be giving presentations on our trip to other dental groups, with the hope of getting more doctors to go to Chogoria and other Kenyian areas.”

Kathy Sangster says, “I’ll be back.”

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