(Pic: Bony, Karen, Abbey, Marius, Sally, Wayne – on arrival)
The last members of Team 3 have landed safely in Oz last week, after their 2 weeks in the heat, dust and humidity of TL. According to brief reports, this trip had was a tad more challenging than a ‘run-of-the-mill’ Timor trip; the Ministry of Health in Timor Leste has just introduced a new regulation for volunteer dentists – they must provide a bunch of documentation, two statutory declarations in Tetum and Portuguese, passport photos and a fee of USD25 for the privilege of volunteering their services in Timor Leste. Unknowing Team 3 had none of the above, resulting in a number of trips to the Ministry of Health in Dili, and a lot of talking to officials. This frittered away some of the team’s precious treatment time, but their skills in compassion, patience and diplomacy were well-exercised! Glad you are home, Team 3; we look forward to your full report.