Alain Niles
Physician Assistant
Location: Togo
Healthcare Mission Work

I have been a missionary working in Togo since 2008 and then felt led to leave the field to get the needed medical training to help my teammates at the Hospital of Hope. Since the hospital opened in 2015, the mission work has been building relationships with patients, connecting them with our chaplain team for follow up and providing valuable spiritual resources. Our chaplain team, that I trained in 2014, consists of 8 Togolese who round on patients every morning, visit patients in our cuisine area and then ride motos several days a week to follow up patients in their villages. On these follow up days, many of the medical providers tag along to visit their patients and open up God's Word in their homes. I anticipate my new role as a PA to provide our chaplain team with the patient connection and then assist them, when possible, in following up with key patients.

God allowed me to grow up on the mission field in France. When God led me to serve in missions, I was excited about the opportunity to work in Togo using my French and my MK experience. In addition, I have been privileged to work alongside an international team that includes several French missionaries.

After living in Mango, Togo for four years, my wife and I wrote the first language manual for others to learn to speak the local Tchokossi language from French. We were young when we moved to the village of Mango and helped in every aspect to prepare the ground for the future Hospital of Hope. In those early days, our West African friends would ask us what we were doing in their town. We would respond that we were like little trees growing slowly but hoped to one day be big trees that might produce a lot of shade for a lot of people. The learning mentality and effort to invest in community and build relationships was successful. God allowed us to build a strong reputation of trust before the hospital opened that would come to serve us for many years after. Our teammates looked to us for language and cultural advice for ministry. In order to be well-equipped to lead, I decided to invest all my time on our next furlough in 2012 to complete a master's degree in Islamic studies. I ended up writing my thesis on how medical ministry can be used as a platform for reaching Muslim patients with the gospel of Jesus in West Africa.

It has been a privilege to take an extended break from the mission field to complete my Physician Assistant training in New York. My wife and I have trusted that if God would open the doors to get the medical training that he would also provide for that training. We stepped out in faith and stepped down from hospital administration to get the education needed for helping in our clinic and in the ER at the Hospital of Hope. My hope is to finish the program, sit for my boards and then return to Togo to help with the significant needs in our hospital. A grant from MedSend would allow me to return immediately without the burden of my loans slowing down our plans.