Each year the Song Saa Foundation and Song Saa Private Island collaborate with the US-based medical charity - International Medical Relief - to undertake an Archipelago-wide health mission. This includes the provision of elementary health services to every member of the five local communities. Since 2013, we have offered free health care to all 3000 of the Archipelago’s population, with dedicated clinics hosted by a team of US-trained health experts and Cambodian medical students (who also act as translators).
Between 03 and 08 September, we hosted our 2018 mission. It was another hugely successful event! Over five full days of clinics, we managed to provide dedicated healthcare to 535 villagers. Common ailments included tooth pain (and extraction), stomachache, headache, muscular aches, joint pain, cataracts and skin wounds (cuts, rashes, grazes etc.).
One specific success story revolves around a young boy of ten years, Sing San, who broke his arm five days before the IMR mission when falling from a tree. With no access to medical facilities and not enough money to travel to the mainland for help, he was getting through the days with grit and determination alone. If he were not able to have the necessary surgery he would have been left disabled for life, losing complete movement in his left elbow. Having seen the IMR physician during our mission we immediately reached out to Kantha Bopha Children’s Hospital in Phnom Penh, well known for providing free surgical care to Khmer youth who cannot afford to support themselves. At the end of the IMR mission, Sing San joined us on the team coach to Phnom Penh and was registered immediately for emergency surgery. Our Song Saa Foundation superstar, Mr Ngoun Chhay, stayed with Sing San in the hospital for eight days – caring for him through the surgery and post-surgical recovery, and ensuring he was well looked after. In these weeks that follow, Sing San is recovering well and with a dedicated physio plan, he is expected to make a full recovery. With the partnership between Song Saa and IMR, and incredible support from the Kantha Bopha Children’s Hospital, we were able to change this young boy’s life forever.