The first group of dentists graduated from the Adventist College of Bahia stood out for the amount of volunteer projects developed during the course [Photo Courtesy of the South American Division]

General Conference

Dentists dedicate time and talent to care for needy people

Dentists graduated from the Adventist College of Bahia were inspired to take care of the most needs along the academic journey.

Brazil | Ana Clara Silveira

Upon reaching the final stretch of college, graduating students usually make several plans. There are some students who decide to enter the job market, some decide to get married, start a new degree, and so on. But in addition to traditional planning, some choose to devote time to caring for others through volunteering and mission.

This was the case of Bianca Carvalho, who graduated in Dentistry from Faculdade Adventista da Bahia (Fadba) . The young woman decided to volunteer with the Adventist Development and Assistance Resources Agency (ADRA) in Paraná to provide dental care to people who cannot afford to pay for care. The project is linked to the International Organization for Migration (IOM), which provides assistance to immigrants.

The dentist believes that the mission was a plan outlined by God. “My purpose is to help the neediest with my knowledge, perfect my talents, to be able to speak and [hasten] Jesus' return by sharing of Him for those who do not know Him”, she reinforces.

Fadba was also part of Bianca's history at other times. In addition to the professional aspect, the faculty “motivates students to use their talents and knowledge for the benefit of vulnerable communities, developing empathy, compassion and demonstrating God's love for others.” The academic environment at the Adventist institution also sparked an interest in missionary work. 

Double mission

Along with Bianca, Yanessa Bispo is also part of this project and reported that she and Bianca provided dental care to Venezuelans. They assisted low-income families with difficult access to medical care. "One of the members asked us to come back more often, as this was the only way they could have access to dental services", she laments. 

The decision to be a missionary came because of the "need to help others". Yanessa argues that hugging and smiling can make all the difference. In addition, she advises that anyone who wants to be a missionary should seek out people who are already part of projects of this nature, answer questions and participate in any initiative. “Don't hesitate.”. 

Others achieved

Luiza Caroline decided to dedicate herself to the mission in another location, but with the same objective: to help others. She coordinates the ADRA project in Ji-Paraná, Rondônia, which serves the city and the surrounding region.

In addition to assisting with basic food baskets, taking care of physical needs, the project also involves encouraging Bible studies and exploring ways of obtaining income for the family. Through vocational courses, they also provide opportunities for many young people and adults who lost their jobs during the pandemic.

Luiza recalls that kits for children were delivered at Easter. The action took place on a rainy day and, in one of the houses, no one answered. But one of the colleagues did not give up on knocking on the door, and eventually, they found a family that needed help. “The insistence of a person made a family have something to eat that Easter”, he celebrates. 

Development opportunities

Dentists do not forget the contribution of Fadba in this process and highlight how participation in other missions promoted by the college made all the difference. 

I Love the Mission, Mission Angola, Mission Karajás, I Will Go, and other mission volunteers were mentioned among the many experiences that prepared the trajectory for the mission they now carry out. For Yanessa, “the institution gave rise to a love for the mission” and this has increased with each field experience. Bianca shares the same feeling and adds: “My wish is that everyone has the opportunity and willingness to serve as a missionary anywhere in the world.”

Fadba was also part of the stories of Luiza, who thanks the institution and already has new missionary goals she hopes to attain. She reinforces that she works entirely for ADRA, but in her spare time, she thinks about future projects both to help others and for her profession as a dentist. “I am making a dream come true”, she concludes.

This article was originally published on the South American Division’s Portuguese news site