Improving Lives and Communities – One Surgery at a Time in the Philippines

May 20, 2010 at 4:58 pm Leave a comment

One of the most rewarding partnerships in terms of immediate and dramatic changes to the quality of life for individuals and communities at large is that between the Trivani Foundation and the Deseret International Foundation (DIF).  DIF not only provides amazing life-changing surgeries, including those that remedy cleft lip, cleft palate, cataracts and club feet, but it has also reshaped the standard medical aid model employed by many organizations.  DIF realizes that shipping doctors into countries for quick fixes leads to lack of follow-up and potential complications down the road.  To address this shortcoming, DIF focuses on developing strong in-country medical teams and improving local health initiatives – including increasing local financial investments in healthcare, improving local facilities and encouraging local support for quality healthcare. 

In their own words, the Deseret International Foundation explains how they are different from most organizations providing medical charity around the world:

We have year-round programs, simplified follow-up procedures, minimal problems with language and customs. Local doctors are trained on new medical procedures they can continue to perform throughout their careers. Deseret is welcomed by local colleagues and government agencies, avoiding the “Ugly American” image.

We strive to have a local sense of ownership and control, help in securing local funding, effective means of importing and distributing supplies, and the constancy of local program management.

We attract dedicated people who are caring and internally motivated. Our overhead is a fraction of the usual, with all donations going towards patient care. We are able to maintain the true ideals of a charity with an extremley low overhead.

With the help of funding from the Trivani Foundation, the Deseret International Foundation is working with Erwin Boiser, our in-country director for the Philippines, to provide surgeries that give people the opportunity to be more engaged in their community and contribute to the livelihood of their families.  This partnership has thus far resulted in around 2,000 surgeries for the villagers in Erwin’s area. In addition to these surgeries, DIF and Trivani have constructed a cataract clinic on the island of Davao which will enable 3,000 people per year to see for the first time!

In the Philippines, as in many countries, deformities such as cleft lip and club feet can leave individuals feeling ostricized from their community.  In many cases, children are kept home from school because their families fear the treatment they will receive, including endless teasing from other children or being ignored by teachers.  One ten year old boy in the community had a cleft lip and palate.  He never went to school for fear of how he would be teased.  After his surgery, he started going to school, playing with other children and trying new foods that he could never eat before.  He developed a love for playing chess.  His confidence grew and his family delighted in seeing their child come out of his shell.

Thank you Desert International Foundation for the incredible work you do, the important model you’ve created to empower local medical communities and of course the many ways in which you’ve changed the lives of thousands of people globally!  Trivani is proud to be a partner!  -rai

And here are more “Thank You”s from the families:


Entry filed under: Trivani HQ.

Empower 5k Trail Run – A Race for Education A CHOICE Humanitarian Volunteer Shares Inspiration from Nepal

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Trackback this post  |  Subscribe to the comments via RSS Feed


Trivani Field Notes is your connection to the people on the ground engaged in the humanitarian work supported by Trivani Foundation.
Each week, new updates and stories from the field will be posted to share the accomplishments, needs, and gratitude from those who can best report the difference Trivani Foundation is making in the fight against poverty.

Recent Posts

Contact Trivani Foundation

198 South Main Street
Springville, UT 84663



%d bloggers like this: