Orthoptics – Team Leader Ghana 2017
Ellen Blom (50 years old) has been married for 25 years and has 3 sons (aged 22, 20 and 13 years old). Since becoming an orthoptist in 1988 she has worked at the Academic Hospital in Groningen (3 years), the Flevo Hospatal in Almere (9 years), in Hospital Amstelland in Amstelveen (15 years) and for last 1.5 years she has been working at Eyescan Eye Care Clinic in Amstelveen.
Her very first volunteer project with the organisation Stichting Zienderogen was a mission in Romania in 2012. It was such a profound experience that it became a catalyst for her to sign up for more volunteer projects (including Suriname in 2014 and this 2017 Ghana project).
It is the joy of being able to make a difference in people’s lives by doing something you are very well equipped and comfortable at doing and the insights you get into the country and culture you are exposed to, make it a truly inspirational and enriching experience.
Ellen was the team leader on this project, which was her first mission in Africa. In her experience every mission is different and each one has something very special. What made this mission particular special for her, was experiencing the level of care Sister Aba provided and the collaboration with her outreach team at the Jachie Eye Clinic.
After initially getting used to working with each other on their first screening day, they became a tight knit team that worked perfectly together like a “well-oiled machine” …. “Sister Aba’s DREAMTEAM” as Ellen called the collaborating teams.
In conclusion, Ellen said “I am grateful that we were able to do our bit in a country where we were made to feel very welcome. The country and the people of Ghana now hold a special place in my heart and I hope that one way or another there will be a continuation of our mission in the future”.