With the goal of carrying out social activities in hospitals, orphanages, squares, hospices, nursing homes, and among needy families, the Doctors of Hope project was born to do good for others. The initiative was created in 2013 and conducted its first action in January 2014, in a public hospital in Rio de Janeiro. Since then, it has expanded its operations throughout Brazil, with a total of 11 classes in the cities of Volta Redonda, Petrópolis, Barra de Piraí (Rio de Janeiro), Brasília (Federal District), and Campo Grande (Mato Grosso do Sul).
The idea for the project came from the movie Patch Adams, which shows a doctor who uses clowning as a form of therapy for his patients. Carlos Anderson Pereira, an interior designer, was inspired and became Doctor Kindness, who brought to the project a threefold human element, where jokes and laughter work hand in hand with prayer and music. In the capital of the state of Mato Grosso do Sul, 82 people have volunteered. Among them are musicians, doctors, educators, and others.
The first training session took place on September 23–25. In closing, they already performed their first action: the visit of the Doctors of Hope to the Adventist Hospital of Pênfigo and the Lygia Hans Home.
"Our goal is to bring a smile, a hug, [and] a bit of hope to those who are going through a difficult situation. Among the volunteers, we have doctors, journalists, teachers, retired people, and many others who will give their time to give to others. The project consists in serving hospitals, orphanages, schools, needy communities, besides being a support to collect donations for those in need," explains Júlio Salomão, state coordinator for Doctors of Hope.
Doctors of Hope is part of the official projects of ADRA Brasil, the humanitarian agency of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.The private, non-profit organization is present in over 130 countries.
This article was originally posted in Portuguese on the South American Division website.