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It was definitely touch and go for a while but our volunteer clinic for the locals of Medewi, Bali not only got off the ground but was a great success treating over 180 people in 9 hours over three consecutive days.
Having tried to communicate with our friend Eddie, who runs Medewi Surf Villa, over the internet it proved impossible to explain what we were hoping to achieve due to the language barrier. We were heading to Bali to run our Love Your Practice Bali retreat helping practitioners to make their practice rock so we arrived early to explain our plan to Eddie. Over night Eddie had organised local security, a venue and had approached the president of the 7 surrounding villages to attempt to get a permit. It was looking good.
We headed off to Lovina where we ran a very successful 7-day program for a group of practitioners. Going back to the very beginning of practice and then rebuilding the dream from there proved an inspiring experience for our participants. Once we finished the program myself Megan and 3 other acupuncturists headed back to Medewi unsure of how the clinic would go.
We arrived to find the president of the local area had yet to sign off on the exercise and so I had to attend a formal meeting to explain our credentials and the plan. Fortunately he had just been very busy and was pleased to give formal approval, an important consideration when working in any capacity in a foreign country.
As Medewi is a predominantly Muslim community it was important for us to discuss any cultural aspects that might affect how we worked. We were considered as doctors so it was okay for men to treat women and vise versa however we still were mindful of how we were going to work. Using distal method acupuncture meant we only treated below the elbows and knees and the head making it more comfortable for our patients. We asked permission every time we treated to touch the patient to ensure they felt comfortable.
Clinic is a go
An interpreter was required to help us understand the issues, which made for slow going on the first day. Day two we were much more organised and had assistants passing needles and had additional interpreters. Donations were taken with proceeds being given to the local orphanage. Medewi is a poor seaside village and we were so touched by the generosity of spirit of these gentle people.
Day 3 saw the close of the clinic and questions were asked as to when we would be back. The answer, I don’t know. We have a busy year for 2017 and are not sure whether we will be able to make it back to Bali but if there are any practitioners who are interested in getting back to their roots and helping the needy we would be happy to guide you through the process to help continue the work we have started.
We would also like to give our thanks for the financial support of: