Meet the MedSend National Scholar: Dr. Annette Onyongo
Last year at this time, we were celebrating the graduation of the first MedSend National Scholars from the family medicine residency at Kabarak University. That class of graduates was not only the inaugural class of a new residency program, but it was also the first class wholly sponsored by MedSend.
This fall, amid a global pandemic, we approved six new family medicine residents at Kabarak as MedSend National Scholars. We continue to see how the Holy Spirit is moving through national believers in Africa.
“A Beacon of Hope”
Dr. Annette Onyango is an example of this generation of national believers within the newest class of National Scholars.
Her impressive resume speaks to the caliber of students that the program is attracting. She received her Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery degrees before taking on roles on emergency response teams and providing in-patient and out-patient care. Additionally, she has taken advanced training in basic life support, advanced cardiac life support, and pediatric life support.
Before continuing her education at Kabarak, Dr. Onyango worked with an NGO helping to combat malnutrition and teenage pregnancies in rural communities. She has expressed an interest in continuing to work with them; her goal is to “empower the girl child and thus help to lower teenage pregnancies that contribute to maternal mortality and morbidity.”
Using Medicine to Share the Gospel
“My time among the Dasanach tribe while church planting as a medical missionary in 2017 showed that there is not much of Christ shared here. The locals only get involved in church activities when there is a profit to them – a donation of clothes or free medical camps,” she recalls. “I have since found that medical camps are not really the solution. Now, we travel to different parts of Kenya teaching lay Christian people basic medical skills that they can use as a door opener for the Gospel. This equips them with skills they will use long after the missionary has left.”
The experience of working with low socio-economic communities, particularly in rural areas, convinced Dr. Onyango that her presence is needed there. Her vision is to work in areas like Marasabit County, where cultural practices (like female genital mutilation) still cause health crises for many within these communities. “A hospital with a Christian doctor [set up in these places] would be a beacon of hope to the locals. We need to share the hope of Christ while offering them very necessary services,” she asserts.
The vision that Dr. Onyango has for her country can have a tremendous impact. The training that she will receive at Kabarak, under the direct supervision of highly-trained physicians, will allow her to provide the standard of care that she believes the people of Kenya should have.
MedSend’s vision is to support and equip national physicians who will show the compassionate care modeled by Christ. Find out more about supporting MedSend National Scholars like Dr. Onyango!
Healthcare remains the only form of access as a Christian witness in many countries.
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