Samoans used to grow their own food – taro, breadfruit, coconuts, bananas – pretty healthy fare. Perhaps this is where foreigners get the idea that Samoa is an idyllic, beautiful island paradise. And in part, it is.
But in the past 30 years, people started buying imported foods and adopting a new, fast-food culture in the droves. Now, they’re opting almost entirely for fast food because nearly all of the food in American Samoa is imported (expensive) but fast-food chains offer a cheap and convenient alternative. The island itself is beautiful, but the health of those living on it is getting progressively worse.
The entire country has been swept up in this fast-food culture for the past few decades. And now, the long-term consequences are turning into a nationwide epidemic:
High blood pressure
Poor dental hygiene
The Seventh-day Adventist church has had a long and lingering presence on the American Samoan islands, but most Samoans still don’t know much about it. The churches have had revivals which have sparked interest, but, like many other revival weekends and evangelistic meetings, people quickly returned to their former lives.
With God, there’s always light in the darkness. In American Samoa, there was a small group of Adventists who were meeting for months, to pray and fast over how they could meet the health needs of their people. They wanted to show their country that they cared. When they heard about AMEN Free Clinics, they knew that this was the way. So they appealed to their churches and, after several months, got approval to bring the clinic to them.
As our name states so distinctly, this is an evangelistic effort. In a series of divine intervention, Taj Pacleb has agreed to round out our clinic with a weekend of revival meetings. By the end of our clinic
several hundreds if not thousands of Samoans will have had their physical pain relieved by an AMEN volunteer. Imagine then, their hearts and spiritual pain being touched by the hope brought to them through the Living Word.
We hope you’ll join us. Until we meet in Samoa, please keep this in your prayers.
Friday (Dec. 1): All volunteers fly in
Sabbath (Dec. 2)
Sunday (Dec. 3): Volunteer orientation and opening ceremony
Monday – Thursday (Dec. 4-7): Open clinic 9:00am-5:00pm
Friday (Dec. 8): Closing ceremony
Sabbath (Dec. 9): Revival with Taj Pacleb
Sunday (Dec. 10): Guided tour and activities
Monday (Dec. 11): All volunteers fly home
Round trip ticket: Up to $1700 (discount available of $1,200-$1,300 round trip ticket on Hawaiian Airlines, email Tui Silafau at email@example.com for more information)
Meals, t-shirts, lodging, transportation, guided tours and activities: $1250 (Depending if make hotel accommodations)
Total cost: Approximately $2450 – 2950 per volunteer (Expenditure for this trip is tax-deductible)
If you’re a dentist, oral surgeon, dental assistant, hygienist, or student—we need you! Even if you’re retired, we can still use you, as many Samoans haven’t seen a dentist in far too long.
We will have X-ray capability and A-Dec delivery units with ample instruments, sterilization, and supplies. You may be asked to take a piece of equipment with you on the plane if necessary.
We will test Samoan’s vision, eye health and give out reading glasses. We will be offering free frames and lenses as well. Ophthalmologists may do cataract surgery and other eye procedures that can be done in a mission trip setting.
If you work in primary care, women’s health, pediatricians, internists, ENT’s, or as ophthalmologists please consider joining this trip. You can be of life-changing value to this population group. Many Samoans don’t have the medical and dental care knowledge that we take for granted.
The Samoan people’s lifestyle centers largely on processed foods and overeating. We urgently need lifestyle and public health experts to help with health education.
Volunteers should make their own flight arrangements, but keep the following points in mind:
Flights to American Samoa occur only twice a week – Monday and Friday – so volunteers are required to arrive on Friday, December 1st in order to make it to the first clinic day.
The only airline that goes to American Samoa is Hawaiian Airlines, so please search within that airline only. Your layover before American Samoa must stop in Hawaii and then continue on to American Samoa. Flight arrangements roundtrip could total up to $1,700 (Depending on which airline you book from the mainland to Hawaii then onward to American Samoa). So book as soon as possible!
Volunteers can choose to rent a car or be bussed to and from the airport, clinic site, hotel, and church with AMEN’s transportation.
Volunteers can choose their own lodging but are encouraged to stay at the Tradewinds Hotel, where we’ve managed to secure a discount.
The original price for a night’s stay is $135 but if you add a note that you’re there for the AMEN Clinic, you’ll get a discount to $99 + 5% gov tax/night.
Once you have signed up we can connect you with fellow volunteers to room together to help ease the costs for the trip.