Kenya Trip 2017
Theresa Tran, a hygienist from Denver, was able to participate in her 4th Global Dental Relief trip this time volunteering in Kenya. We are grateful that Cranberry's scholarship program helps her reach her goal to help more children around the world!
CRANBERRY X GLOBAL DENTAL RELIEF
"I believe that it can make an impact that can extend from one child to another, from one family to another."
- Theresa Tran
Theresa Tran, a hygienist from Denver, was able to participate in her fourth Global Dental Relief trip this time volunteering in Kenya. It was during her last GDR trip to Cambodia that her fellow volunteer clinicians encouraged her to apply to dental school. She is in the middle of the application process now. Theresa is a bright, kind, energetic person who has a huge heart for children and our mission. She excels at any job in the clinic and fully supports our model of care. We are grateful that Cranberry's scholarship program allowed her to join another clinic. She is quite exceptional and will no doubt succeed in dental school.
In the five years that I have been a dental hygienist, I have had the opportunity to volunteer on four trips with Global Dental Relief. I was excited to be chosen as a Cranberry Scholar, because this was my first trip since I decided to further my education and start my application process for dental school. Kenya has always been on my bucket list to visit, especially since they organize an opportunity to go on a safari. I have made great friends throughout the organization, so when one of the trip leaders asked me if I was interested, I instantly knew it was my time.
Every time I volunteer with GDR, I always experience something new. I look forward to a new opportunity, a new challenge, and new experiences with different volunteer members, staff, and children. Kenya was no different. In Kenya, we worked with local dental staff and in a clinic setting versus a field clinic like other GDR locations. It is amazing to learn about the local culture, to stay at the guest-house on the medical campus, and eat some of the local prepared foods. Kenya is full of beautiful people with amazing souls, the culture is rich, and we can relate on different levels. I feel grateful that I was part of a team that extended the quality of life for so many children, for their families, and even the village. I believe that we provide more than just a visit to the dentist that day. We are making an impact that extends from one child to another, from one family to another.
Volunteering on multiple trips, furthers my education and skill set. I especially love hearing about the dentists’ career journeys and strive to have the same potential as the dentists I meet.
I hold on to the moments with the children, because they will drive me to get into dental school, sustain me throughout the program, and remind me why I became a dentist. This dream that just began is soon going to become reality.
Thank-you to Cranberry for making this 4th trip possible. Volunteering on a consistent basis is financially challenging especially with the daunting dental school tuition that lies ahead. I appreciate Cranberry’s generous scholarship program that allowed myself and other pre-dental students to gain valuable field experience. Thanks also to Global Dental Relief who consistently provides organized and fun volunteer trips to serve kids overseas. I will continue volunteering with GDR and supporting this amazing organization in any way that I can.
By Theresa Tran, 2017