“We must do whatever we can, wherever we are, with what we have.”
Greater Southern Alameda Area
Dr. Ben Coplan, a Pediatrician at Fremont, had no idea what to expect when he first landed in Honduras on a medical mission with several American, Honduran, and Cuban doctors. He knew he wanted to make a difference and he knew he had something to offer the Garifuna villagers who live along the Atlantic coast of Honduras.
What he found was an unimaginable need.
“We were the first doctors ever to visit. We would see every kid in town and many were malnourished and anemic. Tuberculosis was rampant,” says Dr. Coplan, who spent nearly three weeks traveling throughout Nicaragua and Honduras to perform mission work.
Malaria, congenital defects, parasites and other infections had gone untreated for lack of medical care. “It was very sad for me not to be able to do more.” But he listened to his seasoned colleagues, including the Mayor of one small town. “Anything you do will be more than anything that has ever been done before.”
For the past two years, Dr. Coplan has spent part of his summer working with the same mission to provide pediatric care to Honduran families. The experience changed his life. “I learned that we each must do whatever we can, wherever we are, with what we have. This was truly a life changing event for me.”