Last year I traveled on a service trip for Jewish young professionals to Ethiopia with the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC). While in Ethiopia, I was privileged to contribute to JDC’s projects of construction of a rural school and medical treatment for children. I also learned about other JDC projects, including including scholarships for university and nursing degrees, water well construction to provide rural villages with potable water, and life-saving heart and spinal surgeries. This was truly a life-changing and unforgettable opportunity (to read more about it, see GTJ’s past blogpost).
Ethiopia has an epidemic of tuberculosis of the spine and the cases in Ethiopia are so severe that many die of a completely treatable disease. With the leadership of JDC’s medical director in Ethiopia, Dr. Rick Hodes, JDC has made it a mission to help children suffering from this disease by providing life saving spine surgery.