In recent years Sierra Leone has emerged from a devastating civil war and is currently in the process of rebuilding. With a population of over six million people, Sierra Leone has fewer than twenty-five surgeons in their entire nation. Essential medical care services in the country are lacking as a result.

Surg+Restore is a non-profit that sends North American volunteers to provide regular intensive training sessions with local doctors and nurses in Sierra Leone. Surg+Restore doctors work one-on-one with these doctors, nurses, therapists and lab technicians in order to establish self-sustaining plastic and reconstructive surgery centers. With the help of Surg+Restore, local health professionals in Sierra Leone are empowered with the skills and resources needed to change the lives of their citizens.

The primary school education that takes place in Sierra Leone is financed by a charity called Dynasty House. The goal of the Dynasty House is to improve the lives of the people in Motema Village and its surrounding villages. Motema is a small village in the eastern province of Sierra Leone.

Surg+Restore has a partnership with an organization called ReSurge Africa. ReSurge Africa is a Scottish Charity that was established in 1992 as IRPS Ghana and relaunched in 2010 as ReSurge Africa. Partnering with the Ghana Ministry of Health, ReSurge Africa created West Africa’s first reconstructive plastic surgery service in Ghana. With the help of ReSurge Africa, a 73 bed unit with 2 operating theatres was built and equipped in Ghana’s largest teaching hospital. At his hospital Ghanaian doctors, anaesthetists, nurses and physiotherapists are trained in reconstructive techniques and rehabilitation. The unit is now managed entirely by the Ghanaian Ministry of Health.

Surg+Restore has envisioned, at least, a 10-year commitment for self sustainability in Sierra Leone. The organization’s goal is to train two plastic surgeons and two anesthesiologists to support the center.  Additional funds are being directed to construct interior and exterior supply buildings/areas, a teaching classroom, professional nursing instructors and medical supplies and equipment.

Coming up on Saturday April 29th Surg+Restore and Dynasty House will be hosting their annual Fundraiser for Sierra Leone. The event starts at 6pm at St Philip Neri Church in Southeast Portland. The evening features live music, hors d’oeuvres, beer and wine, a silent auction and the showing of a documentary describing the critical need and their work in Sierra Leone.

If you’d like to know more about Surg+Restore you can contact them here.

This week at Portland Radio Project we featured the Surg+Restore as part of our award-winning Community Voices series. You can listen below to interviews with key members of the organization:

Gaia Oyarzun, Secretary/Treasurer for Surg+Restore

Jane Foreman, Vice President for Surg+Restore

Dominic Yambasu, President and Founder of Dynasty House

Dr. R. Scott Brown MD MPH, President and Founder of Surg+Restore