Tuesday, November 30, 2010

November 30th - Screening Day 1

Wow...what a day! Today was our first real day of work and was very exciting. Dawson and I got up at 5:45 to get our toys and presentations ready. We had a breakfast of  hard boiled eggs, mini pancakes, and flatbread which were pretty good and then it was off to the hospital. Once we arrived, we went to a different hospital a few blocks down the road for screening. After a quick team meeting, Dawson, Chris, Lisa and I walked around the hospital and met some locals who live behind the hospital. They live in very simple homes and do not have much. We then helped prepare some name tags and started playing with the kids. There was one boy whose name was something like Dashmara who was a bit mischievous but so cute and fun to play with. Many of the kids enjoyed coloring in Lisa's coloring books, as well as playing with bubbles with Dawson and me. Although they had to wait very long to get screened, so many of the kids looked very happy and excited to be there, especially with our entertainment. There was one boy who had no nose who was happily playing with a tennis ball with us. We also practiced brushing teeth with many of the kids with my 3-D mouth model. With the help of a translator, Dawson and I presented our "Oral Rehydration Therapy" module to many of the parents waiting to get their children screened, which they seemed to find interesting. After breaking for lunch, we went back to playing with the kids and doing some more presentations until dark. We only left the hospital at around 8 and everyone was extremely tired. We came back to the hotel for a quick dinner and now everyone is getting ready for bed and excited for another day of screening tomorrow.
Can't wait to update more soon!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Monday, November 29th? (Dawson)

Report from India- I'm alive!!!! So much has happened the last few days, and I feel I just gotta inform you all about it!
So first, let me just tell all of you who donated to my mission, THANK YOU VERY MUCH! All those donations really meant a lot to me, and they'll be making a difference here in a few days..
Let's start from the beginning...
So on Saturday, I departed my loving family and best friend Rebekah at the airport. It was very sad to leave them, and I want them to know that I miss them!! I got onto my plane to Chicago and the flight wasn't fun, but it was quick. I got off and saw my boy Kyle Sevel for the first time in 4 months, waiting outside my gate. We caught up and got a bite to eat at Chili's. I also had to buy Hamlet to read on the trip (kill me). Then Lisa arrived, and the three musketeers were back together again! Good times, good times. She got us some dogtags that said "No Regrets" on them, and I'm wearing mine as we speak! We also met up with another student volunteer named Chris, who is a sophomore from Michigan. He was just sitting here, but he went over to his room. Bummer.
Next, we got on the plane! Next stop? DELHI, INDIA!!!! We then got on the plane, and luckily were able to arrange the seats so we could all sit next to each other! Woooo! I sat and watched a few movies and television programs on the small tvs they had for us. But I couldn't possibly tell this story without telling you about Sargent O'Conner (Sr.) The pilot informed us we had 5 minutes until takeoff, so Lisa thought this meant she would have time to go to the bathroom before we took off. The flight attendent (who we nicknamed Sargent O'Conner) was not the least bit pleased. She calmly said "Just a reminder, we cannot leave until everyone has taken their seats." Okay, simple enough. Then she exploded, "MA'AM, SIT IN YOUR SEAT!!!!!" The entire plane was laughing hysterically at Lisa's expense (myself included). Thus providing us with an amazing inside joke to last us forever. The rest of the flight went fine, I mostly just slept.
Then we landed..... IN INDIA!!!!! We were all extremely excited to be in India! We met up with quite a few people from Op Smile at the airport, and I became acquainted with a few of the medical people we will have on site with us. They are all amazingly nice people and I'm very excited to be getting to know all of them over the next couple weeks. We exchanged our $$ for rupees, and we all piled onto a bus to take us to a hotel in Delhi. The driving here in India is wild.... So many people all trying to get to the same place! The lane markings really mean nothing, I have found. And honking of the horn is a regular part of driving. I'm getting used to it. As we were flying down the road, all the sudden we hear this spuddering, and our bus BROKE DOWN. It broke down in the middle of the road. Eeek. After about an hour and a half, we got a back up bus, and were back on our way to Delhi. Phew ;)
Our hotel was very nice on the first night. It was called the Hotel Broadway, and had pictures from Broadway plays on the inside. Kyle and I got to bed at around 2:30 am, only to be awoken at 6:30 am for breakfast. Breakfast was wonderful! I got some potatoes, toast, and some flatbread stuff (I think called raan?) Anyways, it was great. Then we left to go back to the airport. Luckily, our bus did not break down. We boarded ANOTHER flight (after some wonderful meals at the Delhi McDonald's), this time to Guwahati! This flight was decent, and I got to know Chris a lot more. He likes good music :) We arrived in Guwahati around 2:30 pm, and we got on another bus ride to our hotel. I think I better get used to all these bus rides. Two words could be used to describe Guwahati.. HOT and CRAZY. There are sooooo many people here, and they all contribute to the murky humidity. I swear it was 100 degrees when we got here, but maybe because I'm used to Utah weather. I still thought it was hot though ;) If you're wondering if you see cows everywhere, you do. I've seen probably 50 so far (no elephants though, Rebekah). I noticed a lot of poverty on the drive through, and I'm already starting to be thankful for what I have. However, the people are all smiling and having fun, and I'm liking to get to know them already!
Here we are at the Ginger Hotel. Kyle and I got a quick nap in before dinner, which was absolutely amazing. I ate some rice and some soup, and then the desert was absolutely incredible. Now I am just blogging and getting prepared for tomorrow, the first day of screening! As I slowly figure out the internet situation, I will begin to upload pics. As for the rest of it, I'll just give some quick shout outs! I miss my whole family, and love them oh so much. I miss the Hyde family (especially you Rebekah <3). I miss Brother Day's 2nd period seminary class! And I miss ALL of you reading back home. Thanks so much for your support! Check back in for more updates as they occur. Goodbye!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Less Than One Week Away!!!

Hey Everyone!
For those of you who don't know me, my name is Kyle Sevel. I'm a 16 year old from Weston, FL, and in less than a week, about 100 medical professionals, my awesome mission partner Dawson, our amazing adult sponsor Lisa, and myself will be traveling half way across the world to Guwahati, India to be a part of a medical mission to transform the lives of less fortunate children. As Dawson said, our rooms were right next to each other at Mission Training, and it is so great that I am going with him - I could not have asked for a better mission partner to go through this experience with! Over the past few months, I have been preparing for our mission to India, getting donations of toys and toothbrushes, as well as working on our presentations. As Dawson said, our main goal is to EDUCATE, EDUCATE, and EDUCATE. We have four teaching modules which we will be presenting to the patients and their families: Dental Hygiene, Burn Care and Prevention, Oral Rehydration Therapy (ORT), and Nutrition. We will also be playing with and comforting the children before and after surgery, and we will even have the opportunity to observe surgery! If you have any questions at all, you can comment on the post and I'll be more than happy to answer them!

On a different note, my school will also be holding a fundraiser to raise money and awareness for Operation Smile. Save the date on your calendars for The North Broward Preparatory School Operation Smile Club's Walk-a-Thon on Saturday, March 26, 2011! Registration for the walk is $15 and will include a T-shirt for participants as well as food, drinks, music, and entertainment!!!

Well, that's all for now...I will try and give another update before we leave. Keep checking back!


Thursday, November 18, 2010

9 DAYS!!!

Hey guys. Sorry I haven't been blogging so much. You know me...
The last couple months have been pretty wild. I've been doing quite a bit for Op Smile and preparing for my mission, so I'll inform all of you guys about it now!
Item #1 - Op Smile - Herriman
So I had the opportunity to attend an Operation Smile meeting at Herriman High School. My man Daniel Poot started the club all on his own! I was the first person to tell him about Op Smile, and now he's the president of his own club! I'm so proud of him! The meeting was AWESOME! I was so surprised at the turnout! Driving home, I really was just so happy I went to it. Dan is the MAN! If any of you guys know him, give him a hi-5 for his efforts! He really inspires me so much, and he's one of the reasons I love Operation Smile!
Item #2 - The John Lefler concert
So I think a lot of you have heard about this one. On October 22nd, John Lefler of Dashboard Confessional and John Allred played in a benefit concert for Operation Smile over at Davis High School. I talked to John about it on Twitter, and he agreed to play it. Too bad that was in July of LAST YEAR. The whole concert idea somewhat died down, and so I'd forgotten about it. Then, all of the sudden, this year in August, John messaged me on Facebook and told me that he wanted to do the concert still! So me, Michelle Smith (my lifesaver), and mainly, Amy Lloyd, really jumped on him playing. We booked it for Davis High, and Allred, a popular local band, agreed to play as well. I feel kinda bad, because I got all the credit for it, being on the news and in the newspaper and such. But I owe it all to peeps like Lisa Adachi, Michelle Smith, Amy Lloyd, and of course, John Lefler! They took care of it all for me, but I was the one who ended up on the news. It was a lot of fun! We had a really nice turnout, raising over $850!!! That's 3 new smiles that I'll get to see when I'm in India. I am so blessed to be able to participate in Operation Smile and see miracles happen like this. Thanks to all who came! Here's the link to the interview by Standard Examiner - http://www.standard.net/topics/dashboard-confessional/2010/10/13/dashboard-singer-do-kaysville-benefit-concert and here's the one from ksl - http://www.ksl.com/?nid=148&sid=12917395
Item #3 - INDIA!!!!
Oh. My. Goodness. India is in 9 DAYS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!asksbjds
I am freaking out (in a good way). I can't believe it is this soon. It seems like just yesterday I was making my paper chain in Ms. Waite's room, and it draped on the floor so far that we had to tape it up two different times. Now, it is almost gone. I am seriously in disbelief. I'm SO excited though! Ever since I found out I was going to Guwahati, I have been the most excited I ever have been in my whole life. Now it's next week. NEXT WEEK. I would be lying if I said I wasn't a little bit nervous. But I know it'll all be great! I will be doing a toy drive at my school. If you want to know what to bring, feel free to ask me! Thanks so much to everyone!
Item #4 - Kyle Sevel
So I'm lucky enough to go to India with the coolest student partner of all time! Kyle and I were next-door neighbors at Mission Training, and we bonded very well! I was so excited when we were picked to go on our mission together (okay, I was kinda nervous, but that was only because they called us LAST!). But luckily, you guys get to meet Kyle too! We both agreed that it would be cool if we shared a blog, and so now this will be Dawson's and Kyle's blog! We will both blog at night and tell stories about the day, and you will get to see both of our experiences! And you guys better be checking every night ;)

Thanks so much for reading everyone! That's what's been going on in my life for the last couple months! Have a good day everyone :)