Monday, December 12, 2011

Visit to VIETNAM

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
I have recently just came back from Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam where I was fortunate to meet up with our Brothers and Sisters from the Catholic Healthcare Workers Association of Ho Chi Minh City to advise them to join AFCMA/FIAMC and also invited them to attend our 15th AFCMA Congress in Bali, Indonesia from 18-21 Oct.2012. The Catholic Healthcare Workers Association of Ho Chi Minh City has already been formed and Rev. Father John Toai is the Association's chaplain. Dr. Pham thi Chi Lan and Dr. Nhuyen Dang Phan are the Association's President and Vice-President respectively.
I am enclosing some of the photos that we took together in Ho Chi Minh City. Please note these two places with the signboards viz. (1) Phong Kham Mai Khoi. This is the New Mai Khoi Clinic that The Japan catholic Medical Association (JCMA) led by Dr. Buichi, Catholic Doctors Association of Western Australia led by Dr. Lennard Chan and Catholic Doctors Association of Malaysia (CDAM) represented by me helped to relocate. The old Mai Khoi Clinic was situated in an old shophouse and the owner wanted to take it back. This New Mai Khoi Clinic is situated in a Church compound in HCMC and treats both normal patients and HIV patients. The signboard depicting "Phong Kham Mai Khoi" means Mai Khoi Clinic or Our Lady of the Rosary Clinic. I am indeed glad that I was able to visit the clinic with the Members of the Catholic Healthcare Association of Ho Chi Minh City and took the photo together with them to show it to our other members from AFCMA.
(2)Another place that I visited was Mai Am Mai Tam which is the Sheltered Home for abandoned children from 3 to 16 years old children whose parents have died of HIV. This place is situated in the Thu Duc District and is about 20 minutes from the HCMC centre. It houses 30 children and belongs to the Archdiocese of HCMC and under the pastoral care of Rev. Father John Toai. There are altogether 75 children housed in 3 separate Homes as each building can take in only 30 children. The children are divided into groups where 5 children are under the care of a "Mother" who herself had been treated for HIV.The "Mother" is paid a nominal salary to look after the children. Dr. Chi Lan informs me that it costs about USD4,000 per month to run the Mai Am Mai Tam Shelter or Shelter of Hope. The words Mai Am Mai Tam means Mary Immaculate Heart Shelter.
The members of the Catholic Healthcare Association of Ho Chi Minh City under the care of Dr. Chi Lan And Dr. Phan are a vibrant and enthusiastic group dedicated to doing God's work. They will be an asset to AFCMA/FIAMC. They have said that they wish to attend our 15th AFCMA Congress in Bali in Oct.2012 but will need some partial subsidy. We certainly look foward to welcoming them in Bali where Dr. Chi Lan can present the Country Report to tell us what and how their Association is doing to help the unfortunate and underprivileged members of their beloved country of Vietnam.
In Jesus Christ,
Dr. Freddie Loh,
President AFCMA

Please paste the following website to your browser to assess the photographs taken in Vietnam: