When Orthopedic Surgeon Dr. Frank Haydon first learned about Mercy Ships, he felt moved to action to use his skills to provide transformational healing for those who need it most. He has served with Mercy Ships every year since 2009, and he and his wife, Kathleen, continue to volunteer worldwide.
How has volunteering as an orthopedic surgeon in West Africa changed the way you see the world?
I think most people in America are disconnected from the plight of the poor, and are unaware of how well off we are. Our poorest have access to basic healthcare. I feel a duty to provide care and education where it is needed.
What is something you’ve learned during your time on the Africa Mercy?
To be humble and appreciate the richness your fellow man can offer.
Which one of your patients on the Africa Mercy has stood out to you the most and why?
Each year, there are always a few that stand out. It changes each year as you see more miracles of transformation in a particular person. This year, standing Ulrich upright, we saw a very shy, timid child find his
voice and confidence to be able to be an active, smiling member of his hospital community (on the Africa Mercy).
Has serving with Mercy Ships changed the wayyou do your work in the U.S.?
The gratification of serving on the Africa Mercy has inspired my wife and me to volunteer.
If you could tell people one thing about volunteering with Mercy Ships, what would it be?
You will have a good chance of finding the answer to the basic question of, “What is my purpose in life?” I found treasures in following Jesus.