By Cynthia Nguyen
I really felt blessed to be able to volunteer as a ministerial family at Your Best Pathway to Health in Los Angeles. My husband and I have always wanted to do ministry as a family. We desire to instill the passion for helping others in our children. Each one of us, my pastoral husband, me, as a ministerial spouse, and my boys as “PKs” were able to participate in various ways, yet we worked as a team. We specifically were able to work with various language and immigrant/refugee groups.
Seeing my boys excited to reach out and care for others at Pathway to Health was invaluable. Seeing patients being able to smile, being a part in relieving their pain, sharing a prayer with patients, and hearing their stories was life-changing to us us. As volunteers, we probably were more blessed than even the patients!
Here is a snapshot of my boys’ experiences at Pathway to Health:
Samuel - Social Media Posting
“It was fun and I would do it again!”, says, Samuel, my 17 year-old son. “The Pathway to Health Mega Clinic helped the community with their health and wellness needs. It showed the community that there are people who care.” Samuel volunteered in the social media team for the entire event, posting all the interviews and pictures on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media.
Samuel was able to help in a field that he enjoys, and worked with a great group of young professionalswho were excellent mentors and role models. He worked late into the night posting Pathway to Health content, every hour. The posting kept him so busy that he didn’t have time to go home!
Samuel stayed with other members of the team in their hotel room each night. They quickly realized there was no Wi-Fi in their hotel room so had to maximize each of their personal hot-spots to get the job done. Samuel recognized the importance of his volunteer effort, “Social media helped to advertise and let people know about the event. It drew more volunteers and patients to Pathway to Health.”
Daniel - Interpreter Dispatch
Daniel, my 14 year-old son, told me that, “I went to Pathway to Health to help people. I saw many different people that needed help and received care at Pathway.” Daniel helped in the interpreter dispatch station, servicing approximately 200 language volunteers in 20 different languages. This was an important work to provide language group, refugee/immigrant service for the 8,500 plus patients that attended. About every third request on the CB radio dispatch and loudspeaker, was a request for an interpreter.
Daniel administered the appropriate language tags/bibs to each interpreter and kept a continuous log of each radio request for which language and zone at the event. Daniel says, “I told the interpreters what zone or place to go for the patients that needed help!”
Joseph - Kid’s Program and Volunteer
My youngest son, Joseph (11 years old), certainly was not left out of the Pathway to Health excitement. He joined the volunteer kid’s program which offered fun activities, Bible and character building stories, arts and crafts, and an afternoon trip to the LA Science Center. Joseph also spent time volunteering at the interpreter dispatch station, handing language tags to the interpreters, and distributing lunch box meals to patients and the volunteers in various zones. Joseph said that “Pathway to Health is a good event because it helps people’s needs. I wish the event was held on spring break so I could have more time to spend and more of my friends could come!”