In January and May of 2013 I went on two trips to Tehauntepec, Mexico to teach acupuncture to a group of dedicated and enthusiastic health care workers and other interested people. I was impressed with the teaching methodology Richard had created and how quickly the students learned, despite a great range of educational backgrounds. What was most impressive that upon returning to Mexico for the second trip, hearing and seeing the successes, the real improvement in the lives of the patients of our students. We also had a lot of fun along the way and made great friends with our students.
I was very fortunate to volunteer with PAAP in the Fall of 2011. This experience demonstrated for me the true adaptability of acupuncture as a healing modality. In two weeks, our team trained roughly 50 health care workers to perform safe and effective acupuncture treatments within the walls of bare-bones, rural clinics. During that time, the trainees treated hundreds of patients, presenting with a vast spectrum of complaints, ailments, and symptoms. The trainees were eager to learn. The patients were grateful for the care. I was most impressed by the fact that this non-profit, by design, sought to directly place the technical necessary for this treatment into the hands of the community being served.
Review is for PanAfrican Acupuncture Project. I had a wonderful experience in Uganda 4 years ago. Their work has touched so many lives so positively and I learned so much and experienced so many things that I would never have seen in the United States. I highly recommend this remarkable experience to all acupuncturists, whether they just graduated or have been practicing for many years. It will really show you the power of this medicine in a way that you just can't see at home.
I volunteered as a trainer with PAAP in the spring of 2010, and then got to return as a coordinator/trainer in December of the same year. It was an eye-opening experience that taught me a lot about the power of acupuncture as well just how much of a difference a volunteer organization could make. Richard Mandell is really the driving force behind this group, and his passion and drive really inspires each of the trainers as well as the local Ugandan trainees. PAAP works to train local healthcare workers in simple acupuncture protocols to help treat the many conditions they are seeing in their clinics. This organization does not just come in, provide care for a couple of weeks, and then leave, but instead it provides a foundation for continuing care within the the local community for years and years to come. This sustainability makes my two weeks of volunteering count for so much more than just two weeks. For me, it will last forever, as I witnessed so many inspirational stories that I will carry with me throughout my days as an acupuncturist.
I traveled to Uganda as a volunteer for PAAP in 2004. It was a fantastic experience to work and live with the Ugandan health professionals. I was so impressed with how much good PAAP could do for so many on so little money. The organizers were tireless, efficient and fun. The patients were so grateful and gracious and the experience I gained was really unparalleled. I give PAAP the highest rating!
I volunteered with PAAP in 2008, and Pacific Rim College has chosen PAAP as an approved Global Outreach clinical opportunity for our acupuncture students. I have worked with many health organizations offering free healthcare in developing nations, and I have never encountered one with such a bold vision as PAAP. It is not just a vision either; it is a reality helping thousands of people to get healthcare that they otherwise could not afford, and it leaves a legacy in those communities for continued healthcare. - Todd Howard, President, Pacific Rim College
I was a volunteer for PAAP in Uganda and we conducted two acupuncture trainings there. It was one of the most rewarding experiences of my life because I saw what an impact acupuncture had on those in Africa who need it most. Both the health care workers going through the training and the patients receiving the treatments received it open-heartedly and experienced incredible improvements in their health conditions, sometimes getting relief from pain that they hadn't experienced in years. Richard is tireless and passionate in working to bring acupuncture to those who normally wouldn't receive any other type of health care and his co-worker Allen who coordinates much of the work is a devoted powerhouse! PAAP is doing some important work and I hope they continue to receive much needed help and funding.
I volunteered as a trainer for PAAP in March 2010. I was an Acupuncture student at the time. The trip was rewarding for me on many levels. First, I was impressed with how organized was the training. The coordination of PAAP's founder Richard Mandell and on-site coordinator Allen Magezi was remarkable. While impressed with the competency of PAAP's staff, I am always in awe of Richard Mandell's continual devotion to the project. I find Richard to be an excellent role model for running a non-profit. Second, seeing how well the patients respond to acupuncture, blew my mind. It confirmed for me that I chose the right medicine to study. Third, seeing the trainees wide-eyes and helping them through the process of learning about acupuncture meridians to treating others in their community not only gave me the confidence to treat others in my own community, but also gave me hope for humanity as well. Lastly, as a student, I wasn't sure of how I could help with the trainings, but I quickly learned if you are a willing to help, there is always some need that's helpful, you would be surprised. Even holding a flashlight while a trainee needles a patient, helps a patient feel better - and that is what PAAP does best. Help lots of trainees perform acupuncture so they can help people in their community to feel better. I can't wait to go on another training someday. I highly recommend PAAP to anyone interested in healthcare.
I joined Richard and his PAAP volunteers on a trip to rural Uganda in 2009 and I have been following PAAP progress ever since. Working with PAAP was a truly wonderful experience. As an acupuncturist normally practising in the UK, it was for me a real eye-opener to be exposed to the kind of conditions and health problems commonly experienced in the developing world. We worked with nurses who had previously received two weeks of training from Richard, and were already treating patients with acupuncture and obtaining very impressive results. It was so encouraging to witness how quickly the trainees embraced this form of medicine and managed to master the techniques. Travelling and working in Uganda can be daunting and challenging at times, but it’s a huge advantage to have the support of Richard with his years of experience and knowledge of African culture and society. PAAP has helped thousands of people in Uganda, and for me it was a privilege and a delight to be part of it for a short time. It’s also a great way to see Africa, and I can honestly say that if I could, I would go on every PAAP trip.