Norwich dentist prepares for charity mission providing care for Syrian refugees in Lebanon
- Credit: West Earlham Dental Health
A dentist from Norwich has thanked the many dozens of East Anglian businesses, schools, and individuals who are helping him enhance the lives of Syrian refugees in Lebanon.
Dr Gautam Sharma, who sees NHS and private patients at his West Earlham Dental Health Practice, is days away from participating in a specialist charity mission, where he will provide dental care to refugee adults and children, as part of a recently established outreach programme.
He said: 'There is one and a half million Syrian refugees sitting in that valley who've fled Syria to try to get better conditions and they've got no sort of dental aid or help and they're in a lot of pain.
'If I can put a smile onto people's faces and get them out of pain that's a really rewarding thing for me to do.'
Several weeks ago, Dr Sharma appealed to the Norfolk and Suffolk community to generously contribute gifts and gestures which could be shared with the young children.
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He said the response was more than he or his team might ever have expected.
'I am completely overwhelmed by the generosity of spirit which has been shown by my patients and the wider community,' he said.
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'We have received dozens and dozens of bags and boxes to the practice – with everything from toys to books, to clothes, to toiletries.
'I know all of these items will make the world of difference when I present them to the families in Lebanon on my arrival there later this week.'
Dr Sharma flies out to Lebanon later this week, where he will be treating children and adults, as well as spreading educational messages around dental hygiene.
He will be working in the Bekaa Valley, with the charity Dental Mavericks.
He added: 'I would particularly like to thank the likes of The Taverham and District Lions Club, who recently dropped in with a large amount of toothbrushes, colouring books, puppets – and more.
'Groups like this have really helped encapsulate what a charity mission like this is all about, and I feel so glad to have seen the generosity of East Anglian spirit whilst doing something to help a community thousands of miles away.'
To contact Dr Sharma and offer to help with his ongoing appeal for gifts, email him on firstname.lastname@example.org