“Serving with CardioStart in Arequipa was a tremendous experience, and in the time since I have returned, I have discovered greater commitment and value to the cause of global compassionate medical assistance
I must say it has been a maturing experience professionally, personally and spiritually to perform cardiac surgery in a developing country with selfless, dedicated and compassionate clinicians. It is refreshing to reflect back upon what we accomplished by persevering through the uncomfortable and unknown, and by applying our skills and getting to know one another. It is truly amazing how a monumental cause and calling can draw people together.”
Kyler Hunter, Perfusionist, Kaiser P, Los Angeles, CA
“After almost 30 years as a respiratory therapist in the ICU at Good Samaritan Hospital in Portland, I felt as if there weren’t many challenges left in my field. I’ve completely changed my mind. This mission to Arequipa, Peru filled my heart, stretched my brain, exercised my creativity, created a desire to excel, and challenged me to work hard to help those with the need for someone to make a difference in their lives. The teamwork demonstrated left me breathless (and for an RT that takes some doing!) as did the genuine appreciation of the patients we helped.”
Blythe Harrison-Sayre RRT, RN (New RN) Good Samaritan Hospital Portland OR
“It never ceases to amaze me how I gain a new perspective from each mission I go on. Professionally, its astounding the high caliber of volunteers you continually attract to these missions. The kinship between those we serve with and those who we serve is always a transfusion for the soul.”
Peter Allen RN CCP, Ontario Canada
“At the Peru Cardiostart mission I had the opportunity to assist patients and families in changing the course of their life. It is a humbling experience to learn about their lives and the hardships they face, yet to be a part of the hope they experience when they receive a free surgery. Those feelings of hope will certainly stay with me for the rest of my life. Having given just a week of volunteer time, I believe I received a lifetime of deeper understanding.”
“It makes you realize that we in the Western world have so much and take a lot for granted. Being on a mission as the one in Peru takes you back to a much simpler life, where people are so grateful for what you do. The mission also attracts great people who are willing to give up their vacation and work hard for no money in return, but in fact, the things that you are getting in return are much more important, its priceless.”
Edith Jonkman OR manager, King Faisal Hospital UK Netherlands
“It has been amazing to me that it is possible to get such great teamwork and flexibility out of so many alpha-type personalities. Everyone I have worked with in Cardiostart has very giving and very kind hearts, joined to ridiculously intelligent brains. It’s a fantastic combination. It’s also a relief to find people who understand and share my desire to truly live in the moment and to help make the world a better place.”
Amber Sullivan, RN California
“Cardiostart have afforded me the opportunity to use my skills and knowledge to do this, but even more importantly, to come away with the feeling of accomplishment.
I enjoyed knowing that someone who had no thought of ever being able to get help was helped. I was able to see it, to feel it and to touch it. I saw the problem and saw it being fixed. I enjoyed watching the faces of the patients and family, the amazement, the “wow, you picked me?” look. I was inspired by their stories, was humbled by their graciousness and was wowed by their spirit.
The team was inspiring. I was touched by the fact, that here was a group of people who had never met before, yet, who shared rooms, meals and work together in a place where most have never been before; and did it with such enthusiasm, such joy and harmony. It reinforced my belief that people are truly inherently good everywhere.”
Mohani Ramashai, RN New York
I just wanted to say thanks for everything. Janine. You were so approachable and made all the process smooth with prompt responses. More and more I think about the mission and my experience with CardioStart is so incredible. I had dreamed of doing missions like this for many, many years. I don’t know why it took a so long. I had so much mixed emotions there with joy, fun, excitement, passion, and sadness.
I tell anyone who struggles or complains for anything, “GO to Africa!!”. We seldom forget how lucky we are, I feel more grateful to my life, health, work, friends, patients and family and want to share more things with others.Thanks again for helping me to complete the first mission successfully.