Volunteering in Liberia: Obtaining Supplies from SOS

In the Previous segment of this series of articles, I shared recent information on the Ebola outbreak and my decision to follow through on my commitment to C3 to volunteer. In this segment, I’m going to share some additional preparations that are being taken.As you may already know, this is my first such trip.  I’ve traveled extensively through many impoverished areas but haven’t until now, volunteered. I was totally unaware of the resources available.  In light of the Ebola outbreak in Western Africa, I wanted to bring along some PPE (personal protective equipment) for use at St Timothy’s hospital where I’ll be volunteering.

A SPECIAL THANK YOU TO ATLAS MEDSTAFF

Upon hearing about the upcoming medical mission trip to Robertsport, Liberia; I was contacted by Rich Smith, Senior Managing Partner at Atlas Medstaff with a request to assist. After some discussion, Atlas Medstaff agreed to cover the cost for the hand-carry supplies that I was able to obtain.

Now…where to find supplies?

My first stop…a former employer; Floyd Memorial Hospital (FMH). I checked in with the staff that I previously worked with at FMH in the Home Health Department.  They were excited to hear about my upcoming trip, unfortunately…they were unable to provide any supplies.  FMH (as well as many other hospitals in the Louisville, KY and Southern IN area) send all of their medical surplus supplies to an organization named Supplies Over Seas (SOS) The staff at FMH directed me to SOS

Supplies Overseas (SOS) “Delivering a World of Health and Hope”

SOS IS A 501C MEDICAL SURPLUS RECOVERY ORGANIZATIONS (MSRO) LOCATED IN LOUISVILLE KY THAT SUPPORTS SHORT-TERM MEDICAL MISSION TRIPS FOR INDIVIDUALS AND GROUPS THAT PROVIDE HEALTHCARE ALL OVER THE WORLD. SOS IS ONE OF A GROUP OF MSRO’S  LOCATED THROUGHOUT THE US.

View the complete MSRO CONTACT LIST 2013

We were given a wonderful overview of the mission and day to day activities at SOS. Having arrived to the facility with no appointment, I would like to give a special thank you to the Volunteer staff members that assisted us; Melissa Mershon, President & CEO and Bill Roof, Warehouse Specialist.  Both of these individuals showed the upmost excitement in sharing the mission of SOS.

SOS was able to provide us with a variety of much needed supplies to hand-carry with me to St Timothy’s Hospital. The entire process was very simple.  A quick application, a small fee for the supplies and we were off with a loaded trunk full of gloves, gowns, and masks.

THERE WILL BE MUCH MORE INFORMATION TO COME AS I SHARE WITH YOU THE ENTIRE PROCESS TO GIVE YOU A “FEET ON THE GROUND” PERSPECTIVE.

IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO READ MORE ABOUT MY EXPERIENCE AS A TRAVEL NURSE VOLUNTEER IN LIBERIA.