The countdown is on for a group of dentists and members of the Mondetta Charity Foundation headed to Uganda to provide dental care to underprivileged children.
“They’re contributing a lot,” said Kish Modha, president and chair of the Mondetta Charity Foundation, of the Winnipeg dentists. “They are paying their own way, covering their costs and giving away their weeks to do this work in Uganda.
“It’s very nice of them to sacrifice their time for this.”
Modha said it is about 1,400 children who will be benefiting from the dentists’ mission at a primary school in the community of Kamwokya, Uganda, which has been supported by the Foundation since its inception.
The five Winnipeg dentists, among them Dr. Ken Shek, Dr. Tim Dumore, Dr. Anastasia Cholakis and Dr. Paresh Shah, are to leave Winnipeg on July 4 and arrive in the African nation on July 6.
“Some of the children have never seen a dentist in their lives,” added Modha.
The group will spend one week providing care in Uganda and then a second week sightseeing in Kenya. The dentists are also bringing family members along on the trip.
Dr. Carla Cohn, of Kids Dental, said she and the other dentists have been preparing for about nine or 10 months.
“We’ve been preparing ourselves for what we’re going to see when we get there… many of the children haven’t had dental care,” she said, adding that the team will be structured in a triage fashion, seeing the worst cases first.
“Once we leave, these kids will still not have access to care, we want to be able to provide what we can for these kids.”
Cohn said the role Mondetta Charity Foundation has played in making this a reality is very much appreciated.
“I’m at the point now that was have all of our ducks in a row and I just want to get going,” she added.
The logistics of the trip involved sending 12 skids of medical supplies this past March to ensure its arrival on time in Uganda.
Modha said his Foundation has been quite active in Uganda, setting up a letter exchange between the Kamwokya Primary School and Arthur Wright School in the Seven Oaks School Division, sending Winnipeg teachers to Uganda, and, more recently, bringing three teachers to Winnipeg from Uganda to complete the cultural exchange.