Friday, April 17, 2015

PAACS: Changing the Healthcare of a Continent

This blog is a bit different from the usual. This is a story of one of the residents who is part of the PAACS program at Tenwek. His story helps to share why we do what we do.

Hello, my name is Fasto ladu Theoplose Yugusuk and I am a PAACS Orthopaedic Resident. I was born in 1983 in Juba located in the Republic of South Sudan. A civil war broke out in my country between North and South Sudan. As a result, my people suffered greatly including my family. Food was scarce and people were starving. My father was concerned for our family. He decided to send us to another village and we would come back after the situation was resolved. Unfortunately, once we left, we were not allowed back and were blocked in the village for six years without our father. In 1994, the Sudanese army captured our village. We were taken back to the city and reunited with our father.

After seeing the suffering of many during the war, I knew I wanted to help and serve my people. I eventually attended the University and became a medical doctor. During my medical training, I met a surgeon who told me about the Pan-African Academy of Christian Surgeons (PAACS). He suggested that I apply to the orthopaedic program through PAACS. I submitted my application to the PAACS program in Tenwek hospital in Kenya with the hope of being trained as an orthopaedic surgeon. During this time, I sought God and I prayed and asked for His guidance and help. I asked that His will be done. I surrendered the PAACS application and my life into His hands.

I heard from the PAACS program two days prior to the interview asking me to come immediately to Kenya. My gracious God had opened this door for me with PAACS to become a surgeon. I however needed a visa and had only 48 hours to get it. I went to the Kenyan embassy was told that it would take 72 hours to get a visa. I prayed and asked God for help. If this were His will for my life, he would open the door. The Lord told me to tell the clerk that I had an interview in 48 hours. The embassy clerk asked why I wanted to go to Kenya. I explained that I was a doctor going for an interview to be a surgeon. He immediately told me to come back the next day and that the visa would be ready. My God answered my prayer and worked on my behalf to get the visa. I was thankful to him for opening yet another door to become a PAACS surgeon.

I had never traveled to Kenya before and I didn’t know how to get to Tenwek Hospital once I arrived. I also didn’t have any Kenyan currency. God used a lady I met to help me find a taxi driver from my country of Sudan and he took me to Tenwek. God continued to help me throughout my journey and made a way possible where it looked impossible. I attended the interview and kept seeking God’s will. Two days after the interview, I received an email congratulating me. My dream had come true and I was going to be a surgeon. I was excited that God chose me to do his work. I did not earn admission in the PAACS program on my own abilities. He is the one who opened all of the doors and enabled me to be a part of the PAACS program, allowing me to serve Him.

Surgery is my ministry to glorify God and serve his people. I hope to go back to South Sudan and be a laborer in God’s kingdom. There are only two orthopaedic surgeons in South Sudan. I hope to be the third in my country. It is my desire to help the people of South Sudan and testify of the goodness of my God.

Thank you for your support of PAACS. May God bless you for your generosity and kindness. Thank you also for making my dreams come true and caring for the people of South Sudan by training one more orthopaedic surgeon to serve them.

May God bless you for your generosity and kindness,

Fasto ladu Theoplose Yugusuk