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ss CMF news - spring 2008,  Mission Matters

Mission Matters

Keeping in touch and ongoing intercession for members working abroad

Our forebears took their coffins with them

It is encouraging to see the continuing trickle of folk setting off to work overseas and to hear of the many short term trips that UK based members are making in response to needs.

Recent suggestions for future training programmes seem to leave little, if any, space for trainees to spend abroad. At the same time, many in the Royal Colleges are very aware of the tremendous value of time spent overseas. Perhaps we need to ensure we don't tie ourselves down during our trainee years so that when the opportunity does arise, we are unable to cut ourselves loose and go.

It would seem that the path of the 'nonconformist' who responds to God's call to work abroad will only get harder in the years that lie ahead, but then our forebears took their coffins with them and didn't expect to come back. We might have cause for thinking that, career wise, we are doing much the same thing when we set off regardless of the constraints that are increasingly being imposed upon us, but experience (and God's word) tell us that our times are in his hands. He still supplies all our needs – spiritual, material and career wise – as we step out in obedience to his call.

Developing Health Course (DHC) 29 June – 11 July

The programme and details are now up on the website and we are taking bookings. It will be another packed programme of excellent teaching and warm fellowship, with several new sessions and teachers amongst those who are well established and much appreciated. It's an opportunity to gain appropriate knowledge, learn new skills, meet participants of like mind from around the world, and share experiences and concerns.

HealthServe Day Saturday 5 July

The day is for those simply thinking of working overseas. It will take place in the midst of the DHC at Oak Hill College, North London and will provide an opportunity to mingle with DHC participants – both foreign nationals and UK personnel already working overseas. This is a time to share doubts and fears and have questions answered.

Entitled 'In2mission/cccs' (work it out!), we shall be exploring issues related to living and working abroad. Professor Chris Lavy will be giving the keynote address: The challenges of Healthcare Mission in the 21st Century. There will be a choice of seminars on related issues such as keeping healthy overseas; raising families abroad; the opportunities for, and the value of, short term trips; health care teaching visits as mission; how to keep up to date and re-integrate successfully on your return; etc. We hope several DHC participants will make short presentations regarding their work overseas, and that several agencies will have displays.

Cost: £25 for graduates in full time employment and £5 for undergraduates, students, retirees and those working in a voluntary capacity. Bring your own packed lunch but tea, coffee and biscuits will be provided.

Publications

The new edition of the Short Term Missions Handbook, rewritten and renamed Working Abroad – a guide for those thinking of getting involved in working overseas short or long term, is accessible on our website at www.healthserve.org/pubs but still awaits publication in hard copy.

The new edition of Re-tyred not retired, which contains stories from several of our retired members about their involvement overseas since retirement, and tips for those thinking of doing likewise, still awaits publication.

The new Developing Health CD Rom 2008 should soon be available. Input from the 2007 course has been added to the disc. This fantastic resource is offered free to those working overseas, thinking of doing so, or wishing to send to someone who is, but we would value a donation from those able to do so or who want extra copies.

Old BNFs and Clinical Evidence Concise

Both these books and BNF for Children are invaluable to colleagues working abroad. They can be sent to Pharmaid, British Pharmaceutical Association, 1 Lambeth High St, London SE1 7JN. They will also forward other medical publications published in the last 18 months and in good condition.

Medicines for Africa

Inter Care will send returned medicines to remote clinics in Africa. Contact www.intercare.org.uk or Tel. 0116 269 5925

Giving towards overseas activities

While we continue to encourage students to undertake placements in resource poor countries, for budgetary reasons the decision was taken last year that we would no longer provide grants to students. We do continue to provide a very limited number of small postgraduate grants to members working in a voluntary capacity overseas, to enable them to extend the skills they have to offer in their work. We would also like to continue to offer bursaries to overseas nationals who wish to attend the Developing Health Course.

Your generosity in giving to such work, over and above your regular CMF subscription, is much appreciated and enables us to continue and extend such activities.

New Head of International Ministries

I shall be retiring at the end of August. If you are a medical graduate, looking for a change of direction or know of someone, possibly returning from a post overseas, who you think might be suitable for the job, please find further information at www.cmf.org.uk/fellowship/doctors/vacancies/?id=133.

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uniting & equipping Christian doctors & nurses
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