During my second month-long trip to Grace Girls’ Home, our team worked on business projects to provide more sustainable healthcare for the elders at GGH (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bQwAZ5FEkGI) and we conducted medical work to meet the various healthcare needs (ranging from anemia, dog bites, diabetes, schizophrenia, and much more) for the GGH girls and adults. I also focused on investigating the academic struggles of the GGH girls and researched how we can assist them using educators in Ann Arbor to provide Skype-based homework help and guide the children through online resources like Khan Academy and Insight Math https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ou2gVK2lzUI.
We also spent a lot of time addressing the psychosocial needs of the GGH girls, many of whom suffer from PTSD, depression, and anxiety as a result of their traumatic lives before coming to GGH https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H4yG5qBraic. The local child counselor, Mr. Arumaithurai, who joined our team in 2014 has helped us meet the girls’ mental health needs in a more long-term fashion. I’m glad that we were able to accomplish a lot from business, medical, academic, and psychosocial standpoints during the four weeks on the ground.
Most of all though, I will cherish the relationships I built. I will miss playing with the girls after school every day and sitting with the GGH elders, enjoying the sea breeze and listening to their incredible stories. I hope that my time spent at GGH provided some meaningful benefit to the girls and elders – I know that they have left an indelible mark on me, not just in a career trajectory sense, but on a deeply personal level too.
– Kashif Ahmed