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To Your Health

By Albert Reyes
President, Buckner International

If you’ve ever been sick – and who hasn’t? – you can appreciate being healthy. That’s something Americans take very seriously. How seriously?

According to the most recent reports, Americans spend more than $2.5 trillion each year on health care. That comes to $8,086 per person. Health care spending in this country accounts for 16 percent of our total gross domestic product – by far the highest in the world.

With those kinds of statistics, it’s easy to conclude that being (or staying) healthy is important to us.

On the other hand, take a look at the health care situation in the larger world. According to the World Health Organization, more than 8.5 million children under the age of 5 die every year from preventable causes. That’s more than 23,000 precious boys and girls who die every day.

Children and families in countries served by Buckner are some of the most affected by this tragedy.

About two years ago, we took a strategic look at issues that affect children around the world. We discovered, not surprisingly, that things like poverty, hunger, substance abuse and sub-standard access to medical care have a direct impact on the lives of families, and by extension, children in those families.

At the time, Buckner was addressing all of these issues in the countries we served except medical care. But we realized that to fully transform the lives we serve, we had to find a way to offer health services through our existing ministries.

That’s when we brought in Cynthia Casperson. She is a dynamic individual with a passion and a drive to change the world she sees. Today, Cynthia, a registered nurse with a master’s degree in health care administration, serves as the director of Buckner Health Services. If you watch her in action, you’ll know that one person can change the world – or at least give it a good try.

But she needs your help. Because this is a new dimension to our ministry, we’re starting with minimal financial resources. Access to health care is a critical need for the children and families we serve at Buckner, so we’re committed to this ministry.

When you think that Americans spend more than $8,000 on ourselves each year for medical care, you realize that just a portion of that given to Buckner for boys and girls around the world can have a lasting impact.

Last year, Cynthia led a team of doctors to Ethiopia where they spent an entire week caring for desperate children. The team returned to the United States exhausted, but more committed than ever to the cause of delivering medical care to the children and families Buckner serves.

I hope you’ll join them.


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