On June 21, Columbia Tusculum resident Dr. Jon Mendelsohn, medical director of Advanced Cosmetic Surgery & Laser Center in Hyde Park, accompanied by his wife and two teenaged children, traveled to the East African country of Tanzania to meet a very special group of children living in an orphanage.
The orphanage is owned and lovingly operated by Connie Naber through her charitable foundation known as the Karama Connection in Cincinnati. The 12 children living in the orphanage range in age from 6 to 20; 10 of them are HIV positive.
Dr. Mendelsohn and his family came armed with medical supplies, art projects, T-shirts and other learning materials for the children and were greeted with open arms and lots of hugs and love by both the children and staff.
While in Tanzania, Mendelsohn performed a successful surgical procedure on the lip of Muksin, who is 15-years-old. Mendelsohn was assisted by his wife and daughter, as well as one of the children named Cecelia who has aspirations of becoming a physician one day.
Mendelsohn also brought along a pair of green surgical scrubs for each of the children to wear so that they could all show their support for Muksin and the surgical team that day.
Mendelsohn also brought along some clay butterflies for the children to decorate. The butterflies will be shipped back to Cincinnati and shared with a group of children that participate in Happen Inc.’s art enrichment based programs in Northside. The children in Tanzania and Cincinnati plan on becoming long distance pen pals that correspond on a regular basis.
Hannah and Benny Mendelsohn are both seniors at Indian Hill High School and have plans to organize a fundraiser for the children.
For more information or to donate to the Karama Connection, visit www.gofundme.com/2utxdd7w.