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Laura Nicholson

$10,424 of $10,000 target.

Raised by 0 people in days for Interplast Australia & New Zealand

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paul sundberg

Kokoda Track 2016 for Interplast




I am going to be lucky enough to be walking (hiking? passing out from exertion on?) the Kokoda Track  in 2016 with the inspirational Turia Pitt while  raising much needed funds for Interplast Australia & New Zealand. 


Now, I know I work at Interplast, but that is why I am so excited to be raising money for our work- it is so incredible. I don't want to get too gushy, but this money goes towards repairing bodies and rebuilding lives where it is needed most.


Recently in Laos I got to see this first hand. A patient, 24 year old Douangdy, arrived at the hospital after having been electrocuted- 20 days earlier. The current had entered his hand, passed through his body and exited his foot. He was in pain, for 20 days(!), as he lived with exposed tendon and bone on a couple of his fingers, and toes blackened with bone protruding which in the end were amputated. Can you imagine living like that for 20 days!? He travelled 8 hours to be seen and treated for free by the team in Phonsavan, because he couldn't afford treatment otherwise. Since his injuries meant he couldn't work, how was he going to save up for that treatment?


The best part about this story is not just that he was treated, but that he was treated by a team of local surgeons who had been trained and mentored by our volunteer medical professionals from Australia and New Zealand.  Our surgeons, nurses, anaesthetists and allied health professionals volunteer their time, skills and give up their annual leave to travel to the locations across the Asia Pacific to provide free plastic and reconstructive treatment while helping to build sustainable health systems for the future. They don’t just fly in, do the job and fly out. They empower through a parallel focus on teaching important skills and leaving knowledge so that in the future they can confidently perform the life changing procedures themselves.  


The team in Phonsavan who treated Douangdy were from the capital Vientiane and were there on a cleft lip & palate outreach program which I accompanied as part of a Monitoring & Evaluation program. They had been trained and mentored over the years in clefts to the point where they said ‘hey, we know all about how to treat a cleft lip and/or palate, we can do this now. We’d love the opportunity to travel to the provinces and provide our skills there’.  So that’s what we have been funding for the past few years and because they were there, they were able to use their skills to assist in this emergency case. I think that is pretty great.


This is just one story, we have many more. Would you like to hear another one? Enough? Yep, I thought as much, so thanks in advance for your support. I really appreciate it and there are a whole lot of people who are going to benefit from it.




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Interplast Australia & New Zealand

Over the past 34 years, we have delivered more than 880 programs across 25 countries, resulting in more than 750 surgical and allied health medical program activities that make a huge difference in the lives of some of the world’s poorest people.  Since 1983, with the support of people just like you, we have: [list] [*]Performed more than 23,000 life-changing operations  [/list] [list] [*]Supported more than 70 surgeons and nurses from developing countries to complete part of their training in Australia and New Zealand, including the sole current plastic surgeons in both Fiji and PNG. [*]Sent 800 medical volunteers, including doctors, nurses, anaesthetists and allied health professionals, on more than 880 medical programs [*]Provided more than 42,000 consultations [/list]  Through our work, we aim to change futures for people so they can live fulfilling and productive lives. Help us do more

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Laura Nicholson

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