Smiling is simple.
Such, however, was not the case for Marisa Mejaseo and her family. The 42-year-old mother and 3 of her children cannot smile because they had been suffering from excruciating dental pain for weeks.
Even if they wanted to, getting their aching teeth out seemed impossible. They live far away and cannot pay any dentist the visit.
Marisa’s family is part of the Eskaya Tribe, an indigenous group residing in the mountainous regions of Bohol. They must hike down the rough trails for hours just to get to the nearest hospital and dental clinic. Moreover, Marisa and her husband find it hard to afford a dental consultation. As vegetable farmers in Barangay Taytay in Duero, Bohol, they only have enough money to cover their daily basic needs.
This made Marisa burdened. The mother’s heart would ache especially whenever her little boys – Lienard, Kent, and Angelito – cry out in pain while enduring the toothache for a month.
“They would tell me that their teeth are swollen and painful. All we can do was put toothpaste on the swollen parts to reduce their discomfort. The pain would go away for a while, but it always comes back,” Marisa recalled.
That’s why it’s been a huge relief for their family when they heard about Operation Blessing Foundation Philippines’ medical mission in their community. In the activity dubbed as #OperationBlessBohol, volunteer doctors, dentists, pharmacists, and pastors worked hand-in-hand with Bohol’s Local Government Unit and the Armed Forces of the Philippines so Boholanos could experience their much-needed healing.
During the 4-day mission on January 21 to 24, Eskayas from Brgy. Lundag and Catagdaan in Pilar, Brgy. Canta-ub in Sierra Bullones, and Brgy. Taytay in Duero, Bohol availed free medical, dental, and optical services, as well as free medicines and eyeglasses. Pastors from church partners prayed for them during counseling sessions.
Not only that, Gizmo and the Superbook team also brought cheers and smiles to the faces of the Eskaya children. They enjoyed film shows, exciting games, and even danced along with The Salvation Poem.
Volunteer dentists and The 700 Club Asia host Joyce Burton-Titular also taught the youngsters how to practice good oral hygiene.
At the mission in Taytay, Marisa and her 3 kids received free dental checkups and medicines and had their aching teeth extracted.
“Thank you, Operation Blessing, for the free dental service and medicines you gave us. We’re happy because of your help! It’s very expensive for us to have our teeth extracted, and we’re glad because we availed of it for free. Thank you for praying for us, too. It feels good to be reminded that there is a God,” said Marisa, letting out a huge sigh of relief.
Her youngest son Angelito expressed his joy that finally, he can sleep and eat well without any discomfort. “My tooth was too painful before. Now, I’m okay because the dentist removed it already. Thank you very much!”
Do you also want to help in restoring the health of our kababayans in far-flung places? Visit Operation Blessing’s website and Facebook page now and know how you can partner in bringing smiles to our kababayans in need.