Tertius Venter: Plastic & Reconstructive Surgeon, Fulltime Volunteer
Tertius Venter had been in private practice as plastic and reconstructive surgeon in East London, South Africa, for 10 years when he signed up to serve on a Christian hospital ship for 10 days on the West Coast of Africa. Gripped by the love and reality of God, the intense poverty he saw and the desperate need of people sharing our world, his life changed forever. He was called to serve God fulltime and serves in different ministries. Since 2006 Tertius has been a fulltime volunteer with the organizations Mercy Ships International, Operation Smile and The Pan African Academy of Christian Surgeons to help relieve this enormous burden that destroys so many lives. These organizations reach out to the forgotten poor with a message of hope and healing, show them by word and action that each human life is valuable, important and certainly not forgotten. While physical and spiritual healing takes place, dignity and self-respect is restored.
- Mercy Ships International: On the hospital ship, operating mainly on the West Coast of Africa, the M/V Africa Mercy is a 450 crew Christian hospital ship, offering free surgeries to the peoples of West Africa, one of the poorest regions in the world, where up to 60% of the population has no access to any form of medical care. (www.mercyships.org)
- PAACS: The Pan Africa Academy for Christians Surgeons trains surgeons in Africa and is active in countries like Gabon, Niger, Kenya, Cameroon, Malawi and Ethiopia training African doctors through a 5-year program credentialed by the Loma Linda University in California to become surgeons dedicated to service in Africa – currently 70 surgeons are in the program. (www.paacs.net) In the United States there are one surgeon for every 2 272 people and in Ethiopia one surgeon for every 1. 1.6 million people
- Operation Smile: repairing cleft lip and palates in patients of all ages as it is believed that no one should be burdened and often ostracized by a defect that can be repaired in 45 minutes. It is a global charity founded by a Christian plastic surgeon and operates in all countries where the poor cannot afford surgery e.g. South America, Central America, Africa, China and India. (www.operationsmile.org)
The Netherlands and Global
GCF # 544