When I was younger, I really wanted to be part of MSF (Medicine Sans Frontiers) to serve people who are deprived of medical care because of natural disasters or wars. However, I was not clever enough to be enrolled into MBBS (Western Medicine course), and ended up studying Chinese Medicine, which I thought there would be some special meaning about that.
After I was graduated, I went back to work in The University of Hong Kong, doing some clinical and administrative works, sometimes teaching. However, is this career path I am seeking for the rest of my life? Am I satisfied with what I was doing? Live a stable life and be an obedient employee to long for each paid-day and holidays? Obviously NOT! That’s not what I want to live! But MSF doesn’t take Chinese medicine practitioner as volunteer, what should I do using my profession?
Thanks to my friend Dennis Au who set up CMA (Chinese Medicine for All) in 2009, it becomes a platform for us to spread our low-cost and efficient medicine to some neglected corners in this world. Back in 2010, I joined a one-week service in Infanta, Philippines. That was an inspirational trip, and a life changing experience. I witnessed how herbal medicine and acupuncture work well with the locals, and suggest them to live a healthier life is an honorable thing to do. However, the project should be kept going and became sustainable, providing health care is not a one-off deal. As a result, I decided to dedicate half a year to stay in Infanta in 2013, trying my best to push forward the promotion of herbal medicine and acupuncture in the local community.
Here are the website and Facebook page:
After the 6-months service, I traveled to the border between Thailand and Myanmar and volunteered in Mae Tao Clinic, a hospital which provides free consultation and treatment to the underprivileged people in that area as the civil war in Myanmar is still going on. The villages in the Myanmar side become our target to serve, and CMA set up another team called “Village Acupuncturist” to teach a group of students how to use needles, cupping and scraping to treat simple diseases. You can follow my friends Patrick and Amy’s service at the border area, sorry that it is written in Chinese, maybe Google Translator can help:
I will keep on carrying my needles and cups in my backpack so that they could be useful one day!