Monday, March 3, 2008

Meet Project HOPE's Africa Partnership Station Volunteers

Only a few of us actually knew each other from previous missions but throughout our 14+ hour journey we all managed to find each other—thanks mostly to Robin, who wore her Project HOPE t-shirt so everyone gravitated toward her—and learned a little about what each person was doing on the mission.

Meet Project HOPE’s Africa Partnership Station Volunteers:

Marley Gevanthor
Marley is a nurse educator from Novato, California in the San Francisco Bay Area. She currently works for the Community Health Network at San Francisco General Hospital. This is actually Marley’s second time volunteering with Project HOPE. She was on the first rotation of the Latin American Mission on the U.S. Navy Ship Comfort.

Christella Guzman
This Christella’s first time volunteering with Project HOPE. She is the Lead Clinician at Women’s Community Clinic in San Francisco. Christella is also a Nurse Practitioner volunteer with Seton Medical Center Rota Care Clinic where she provides acute care to uninsured residents of San Mateo

Susan “Sue” Hoffman
This is Sue’s first mission with Project HOPE. She is a clinical nurse midwife from Lyndonville, Vermont and works for Women’s Wellness Center Northeastern Vermont Regional Hospital.

Robin Jones
Although this is also Robin’s first time volunteering with Project HOPE she is an experienced volunteer. She is a clinical nurse midwife with volunteer experiences in places like Liberia and Afghanistan where she says women can’t believe men are actually allowed into the delivery room in the U.S. Robin is from Chesapeake, Virginia and is a part-time faculty at the Medical Career Institute in Virginia Beach.

Dr. Michael Polifka
Dr. Polifika is also an experienced medical volunteer with experience volunteering in Africa, Latin America and Southeast Asia. This is Polifka’s fifth time volunteering with Project HOPE. He served on two rotations aboard the U.S. Hospital Ship Mercy during the Tsunami relief in 2005, one rotation in 2006 again on the Mercy in Indonesia, and last year aboard the USNS Comfort. Dr. Polifka is serving as the Africa mission’s Chief Medical Officer. He is also an ER physician at North Adams Regional Hospital in Manchester Center, Vermont.

Faye Pyles
Faye has never volunteered with Project HOPE but also has experience with medical missions. She recently retired from the Navy where she served as the Primary Triage Officer for Humanitarian Mission to Cambodia, and served on the Primary Care Team providing pediatric assistance in Port Au Prince, Haiti. She was also assigned to be the pediatric nurse practitioner for refugees in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba and was part of the Department of Pediatrics in U.S. Naval Hospital in Naples, Italy. Over all Pyles has over 28 years of pediatric nurse practitioner experience. Faye is from Norfolk,Virginia.

David Vuurman
David is a nurse educator from Plainfield, Indiana. This is his third mission with Project HOPE. He previously served aboard the USNS Mercy in 2005 and then again in 2007 aboard the USS Peleliu. When he is not volunteering he works for the Indiana University Medical Center as the Charge Nurse and in the Neuroscience ICU.

Joy Williams
Joy lives in Medford, Massachusetts where she works for Massachusetts General Hospital in the Department of Radiology. She has over 17 years experience in the ER, four in radiology nursing, three in burn surgery, and 3 years in medical surgery. She has worked with Project HOPE before on the USNS Comfort after hurricanes on the Gulf Coast and again in Latin America in 2007.

--Marisol Euceda

Also Meet Valdez and Julia who joined the mission later in Liberia

Help support the Project HOPE mission in Africa.

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