It is with great sorrow that we must share with you, the friends and supporters of Medicus Christi, Ltd., that our Founder and Executive Director, Joe Marotta passed away suddenly at his home the evening of Feb. 8, 2016. You can imagine what a shock this is to his family – he was only 57 years old. Please keep his wife Kate, and his children, Joe Jr. and Anna, as well as his parents and extended family in your thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.
The family has asked that you keep Joe’s vision and memory alive with your continued support of Medicus Christi, Ltd., memorial contributions can be made in memory of Joe to Medicus Christi, Ltd, 16 MacAffer Dr, Menands NY, 12204 or on MedicusChristi.Org.
The Medicus Christi Board and Joe’s family will work diligently to ensure that all funds raised by Medicus Christi will be spent in the way Joe would envision and have wanted.
Below you will find many of the announcements and news that Joe had posted to mark the growth of Medicus Christi.
MEDICUS CHRISTI MEETS PRESIDENT MAHAMA
Today the members of Medicus Christi were afforded a tremendous honor. All thanks to the efforts of Deputy Ambassador to the United Nations, Mr. Philbert Johnson.
MC Board Members Dr. Marotta, Mrs. Marotta, Kwame Fosu and Mr. Johnson met with the President of the Country of Ghana, H.E. Mr. John Dramani Mahama.
President Mahama was in New York City for the annual meeting of the United Nations General Assembly. He was kind enough to take time from his extremely busy schedule to meet with us to discuss the healthcare situation in West Africa and to officially welcome Medicus Christi’s innovative plan to Ghana.
President Mahama is a communications expert with a keen interest in advancing the technological capability of his country. This includes bringing up-to-date medical systems, personnel and training programs on board.
With the President’s blessing and good wishes, MC will now move forward with our first project-The FORCE/WALC for Orthopedic Surgery at the Holy Family Hospital in Berekum. He even told us that he looks forward to being present for our ground breaking next year.
Many thanks to Mr. Mahama and his staff for this inspirational day.
Dr. Joseph Marotta
Dear Followers of Medicus Christi,
After many months of travel, consultation and diligent deliberation(not to mention a whole lot of praying)MC has signed a formal Memorandum of Understanding with the Bishop of the Sunyani Diocese in Ghana to begin the first phase of our orthopedic hospital and learning center project.
We will be building our facility on the grounds of the Holy Family Hospital and Nursing School in the village of Berekum, part of the Brong-Ahafo region. Our partners there include Bishop Matthew Gyamfi, spiritual leader of the vibrant Catholic Diocese of Sunyani, The Giving to Ghana Foundation and the hospital, nursing school complex.
The Holy Family Hospital, established in 1948, is one of the largest facilities of its kind in Ghana. With 150 inpatient beds, 5 operating rooms, a fully equipped Emergency Room and well trained staff, HFH offers MC the opportunity to develop our orthopedic hospital and educational facility on a large adjoining parcel of land in stages. The Nursing School, one of the best in all of Africa, has over 400 students with up-to-date living quarters and classroom facilities. Nurses and OR technicians will be trained in the latest orthopedic surgical techniques, in-patient care and rehabilitation services.
The first phase of our project will be the construction of a fully functional outpatient orthopedic clinic. This clinic will utilize the already existing on-site OR, ER and Xray services of the Holy Family facility . Over time, as financing and personnel permit, dedicated orthopedic operating rooms, patient wards and trauma ward services will be built.
Once the orthopedic services have reached an appropriate level of activity and Ghanaian orthopedic surgeons from the neighboring University Medical School in Kumasi, Ghana have been fully integrated, our learning center building will be added to create the largest hospital/educational center of its kind in all of Africa. Commencing the training of orthopedic residents, nurses, technicians and physical therapists and offering continuing education services to orthopedic care givers from across the African continent.
Over the next several months, Medicus Christi, ” Giving to Ghana ” and other partners including Faith communities, MC Europe and the Ghanaian Mission of Ghana to the United Nations will be ramping up fund raising efforts and sponsorship opportunities.
At this time, the UN Ambassador from Ghana and her staff are arranging for a banquet in our honor at the United Nations Building in New York City. This tentatively to take place on Friday, November 13th 2015. Please mark your calendar and save the date!
The many prayers and good wishes of hundreds if not thousands of supporters are coming to fruition. Medicus Christi is now on the verge of making a huge impact in the lives of those in need across the African region.
Our goal is bring the technology and build the human capacity for our brothers and sisters in Africa to partner with us as colleagues in the field of medicine in general and orthopedic surgery in particular. There is no shortage of need and no limit to what can be accomplished by caring people who strive to make a difference.
Stayed tuned for more updates in the weeks ahead. Go to our website:www.medicuschristi.org for more information and progress reports.
Your friend in compassionate care,
Dr. Joe Marotta
Last week representatives of Medicus Christi including myself, Board Member John Walsh and Mr. Martin Torrey sat down with U.S. Congressman Paul Tonko and his Economic Development Liaison Marilyn Smith at the Congressman’s office in Albany.
The purpose of the meeting was to update our Representative from Capitol Hill and his staff on the latest projects we are sponsoring to benefit the people of West Africa. Mr. Tonko has been very supportive of MC since our inception and has a close relationship with immigrants from West Africa who make up a significant portion of his constituency. Likewise, Ms. Smith has been a key contact person for us and understands the ongoing healthcare problems that Medicus Christi is endeavoring to correct. Namely, the severe lack of adequate medical infrastructure and manpower in the Subsaharan Region.
We spent over an hour discussing ways we might work together to have a significant impact on the lives of suffering people in need of our help.
As we move forward I am hopeful that with the Congressman’s sponsorship MC will gain the trust and support of other legislators and administrators in Washington.
We continue to gain allies in the fight against poverty and disease. Our relationships span the entire State of New York, across the United States and now into Europe as well as Africa.
Medicus Christi is on the move. Our mission is to help the poor gain better medical services through solidarity, education, development and medical diplomacy. We need the support of people of character and compassion. People with Big Hearts. Join Us!
“For it is in giving that we receive.” – St. Francis of Assisi
May the Lord Bless you and keep you.
Dr. Joe Marotta
Medicus Christi Expands
I am concluding a wonderful week in Rome with a great update to share with you about Medicus Christi. With the sponsorship of our good friends Dr. Ettore Valente, Professor Ivo Pulcini and many others, we are laying the groundwork for the first international Chapter of MC, Medicus Christi Europa. Originally I had hoped to gather just the interest of several local physicians in Italy itself. After several meetings with a number of doctors and businesspeople along with media representatives, government officials, clergy and sponsors from across the European continent and beyond, our efforts have enlivened the excitement of many, many more brothers and sisters interested in our mission.
People of many nationalities, Faith beliefs and racial backgrounds see the ideals of Medicus Christi as a way to express their deep seated compassion to help the poor and underserved.
That call of charitable service to those in need, a basic tenant of our endeavors, is a common understanding throughout our society. Despite differing political, religious or social experiences, this form of “Medical Diplomacy” and long term developmental project model rings true for caring individuals across the globe.
I am proud and privileged to have been introduced to so many wonderful individuals.
Whether Black or White, rich or poor, Catholic, Muslim or Jew, we all share the same frailties of the human condition. We all need to work together to solve the physical problems inherent in our mortal bodies. We are much stronger together than if we try to stand alone or in conflict with each other. I am humbled by the outpouring of enthusiasm for this work.
These concepts of cooperation and solidarity are the keys to the future of mankind! They are not new concepts of course. They have been promoted by like minded humanitarians and people of peace across the ages. From St. Francis and Mother Theresa to Ghandi and Mandela. The idea is simple. Just go out to love and take care of one another.
Our little project is blossoming. We need the continued efforts of all our supporters, new and longstanding.
Keep an eye on the Medicus Christi project. Get involved. Together we can make a difference in our World.
May the good Lord bless you and keep you always.
Your brother in Faith and Charity.
Dr. Joe Marotta
Medicus Christi Europa
It is with great pleasure that I announce the start of the first international branch of our nonprofit organization. After many months of conversation with my medical colleagues in Rome along with the cooperation of the Catholic Church in Italy, Medicus Christi Europa will soon be joining Medicus Christi, Ltd. in its work to improve the medical care of the poor in Africa.
Dr. Ettore Valente, an Orthopedic Surgeon from Rome has gathered a group of physicians willing to offer financial support and volunteerism to our efforts.
In early February, I will be traveling to Rome for meetings with Dr. Valente’s group and representatives from the Church in order to finalize these arrangements.
Medicus Christi is looking forward to a big year of successes in 2015. Stay tuned for more updates.
May the Lord Bless You and Keep You.
Dr. Joseph Marotta – Executive Director of Medicus Christi, Ltd.
Join Us In the Fight to Help Africa
The last few months have seen quite a bit of activity in several aspects of our non-profit endeavor. We have engaged a number of entities in support of our TORCH/WALC facility in Ghana. This includes the possibility of a matching grant from a philanthropic group in Switzerland that awaits further resources and discussion.
We are starting a Medicus Christi Club at Siena College in Loudonville, New York. The required paperwork and registration to become an officially sanctioned part of the Student Activities Council is underway and should be completed by the beginning of the Spring Semester in January.
There is a group of physicians in Rome that want to create a Medicus Christi Chapter in Italy. Currently, they are organizing with an entity in the Catholic Church called FIAMC(In English- The World Federation of Catholic Medical Associations). These colleagues intend to support our work overseas financially as well as with volunteerism once our hospital activity gets underway.
We have also applied for a large grant from a Foundation in the Persian Gulf Region. More on that as information becomes available from them.
This month we are delivering a large container of equipment to Ghana for use in our Orthopedic Center. These product donations include brace and orthotic devices from the Breg Company, fracture repair implants and tools from the Stryker Company and other donated Anesthesia goods from the Cardinal Health Corporation.
Our other focus recently, more of a short term project, has been our BREAK EBOLA campaign. We are raising monies to send much needed equipment and supplies to our friends in West Africa battling this deadly outbreak. Although much of the media hype over Ebola in the United States has settled down, the epidemic still rages in the countries of Guinea and Sierra Leone. Surrounding nations, including Ghana, are ramping up to establish the necessary quarantine and treatment facilities needed to combat Ebola as well as other threatening infectious diseases native to their tropical climate. Infectious disease is the number one killer of the African people. Men, women and children included.
Our medical colleagues, the Church in West Africa and the government of Ghana have reached out to Medicus Christi for help in procuring the materials needed to face this dramatic public health challenge. With our strong relationships in the region and our established ties to a number of manufacturers in the U.S., MC can be of huge benefit for them. We have NOT shifted resources from the TORCH/WALC to engage in this new endeavor. However, we are spending the necessary time and effort to answer this call as compassionate partners with our brothers and sisters in need.
As we arrive at the season of brotherly love and caring, the call for help is ever more acute. Medicus Christi continues to answer that call.
I ask for your continued support of our efforts. We need financial resources to keep our projects going. Projects and plans that impact the lives of our needy fellow human beings in several critical ways. In the care of trauma and orthopedic conditions as well as the deadly infectious modern day plagues that haunt our World.
This week, Time Magazine recognized “The Ebola Fighters” as its Person of the Year. We at Medicus Christi are proud to engage in this fight with them. Supporting and providing the infrastructure and human resources they need to beat this menace and protect the people of Africa from future infectious outbreaks.
Please consider an end of the year, tax deductible donation to Medicus Christi, Ltd.
It’s easy! Just visit our DONATION page here on the website. We have a “Click and Pledge” link that will allow you to give right from home. You will also find our address if you would like to mail your gift instead.
The people of West Africa need our support in many ways. Please join us.
Help us to help them.
May the Peace and Love of our Heavenly Father bless you and keep you this Holiday Season.
Dr. Joe Marotta
Medicus Christi, Ltd.
For many millennia the World has struggled through political upheaval, warfare and natural disaster. Our conflicts and disagreements are many and our powers to overcome our differences are few. Government officials, faith leaders, sport and entertainment celebrities, etc. have failed to bring our diverse ideals closer. We are constantly at or on the verge of warfare. It seems inevitable that in an age when the threat of total annihilation hangs precariously over our heads, we are destined for the ultimate destruction of our planet. We just can’t seem to get along.
There is one component of modern society that does bridge many divides. Medicine. Doctors get along with each other quite well. Unencumbered by nationalistic, religious or sexist restraints, most physicians and medical professionals work side by side on common goals for the good of all mankind.
I have been to many an international medical conference. Although language is often a barrier to be overcome, the sharing of wisdom and an atmosphere of collegial fair play and cooperation are readily evident. There is a common bond of dedication to knowledge, truth and service. A sense of importance on working in partnership for the common good. In fact, unlike other professions which leave their partnerships at the conference door and go their own way after “working hours” are over, many physicians socialize and find each other’s company very enjoyable. Many of us live to see our colleagues again and again at meeting after meeting. Traveling across the globe to re-ignite friendships that have decades of history together. A micro society of brother and sisterhood.
Of course the sharing of research and discovery has some competitive aspects. Intellectual property is closely guarded. Luckily, the average physician is honest and trustworthy, giving credit where credit is due. In an age of instant communication it is fairly easy to figure out who came up with an idea first anyway. Dishonesty is taboo. Reputations are carefully protected. No one wants to be labeled a liar or cheat. It is part of the med school admission’s screening profile. There are plenty of accolades and successes to go around since we have only scratched the surface of understanding the totality of medicine. Doctors, in fact, revel in the successes of their friends and colleagues. Competitive spirit drives new innovation and the process of creating new knowledge is further fostered. We tend to feed off each other. We hate making the same mistakes others have already struggled through. We want to move forward together. This saves an incredible amount of extra work and lost time. And time is money. As well as much needed sleep.
Physicians are often asked to intervene in overseas “Mercy Missions” when warfare or natural disaster have had their devastating effects. Closed borders are opened to the healers. A truce is often called so combatants can receive care. Import restrictions and embargoes are lifted. Doctors treat all human beings that need their help. Flags and ideologies don’t enter into our equation. A sick or injured person is a patient to be cared for and about. We leave the confrontational divisiveness to politicians and cartographers. We go where we are called regardless of personal risk or a line on a map. That is our job.
This attitude of humanitarianism and compassion has never been more evident than during the recent Ebola outbreak in West Africa. Scores of medical professionals continue to enter the danger zone in order to help. Researchers all over the world have come together to work on treatment strategies and a vaccine for the virus. Service to those who suffer and cry out for mercy is the mantra of my brave and brilliant colleagues. They are modern day saints and heroes in my book.
In my view this attitude and example can be used for an endless amount of goodwill creation and bridge building across the globe. Medical Diplomacy of this kind can mend more than physical wounds. Even heal open sores that are centuries old. My colleagues and me are already talking, collaborating and reaching out to one another. The politicians on opposite sides of any dilemma would be wise to utilize this mechanism and these humanitarians.
Mankind shares a common bond. The frailty of the body and the need for similar cures and treatments. This commonality transcends all conflicts, all nationalities and all religions. Once physicians interact, new lines of understanding grow and strengthen. Common weaknesses are transformed into common goals. Working together against the only common enemy every human being shares. Medicine brings all together as one.
Let the doctors lead the way to a better future for all mankind.
Medicus Christi intervenes in the Ebola Crisis
Medicus Christi, Ltd. is a nonprofit created to bring up-to-date medical care to the poor in the Developing World. Our aim is to provide the means for local citizens in underserved countries to establish and sustain healthcare systems for the future.
Our approach is quite unique. We rely on concepts such as Impact Investing, Human Capital Creation and Solidarity to achieve our goals. We are not just transient, itinerant visitors to the underserved regions of the World. We want to do more than just “Give our brothers and sisters a fish” or “Hand them a fishing pole” and leave. We will offer a helping hand to lift our counterparts in Medicine overseas. To team with them. Becoming colleagues working on projects and discoveries together. Bettering the Human Condition and creating a healthier future for us all.
Currently we are involved in two main projects:
One is to create what will become the largest Orthopedic Hospital on the Continent of Africa along side a Learning Center that will train the doctors, nurses, therapists and technicians for Africa’s future.
The Second is to intervene urgently in the Ebola crisis. Not by sending a meager shipment of donated supplies or cheap equipment from the Far East, but by setting up infrastructure, training facilities and renewable quality supply lines which will allow the countries at risk to protect themselves from this deadly modern day plague and future epidemic outbreaks.
To attack these lofty goals, we at Medicus Christi, Ltd. are joining forces with major product manufactures in the United States and Europe. We have the support of the Catholic Church in West Africa and Rome as well as several medical societies and universities.
We are initiating a grass roots campaign to raise additional funding to carry out these important projects. And we need you to get involved. Individuals, church groups of all denominations, doctors, professionals in all fields of endeavor, trade unions, social entities and philanthropists from all walks of life.
There is an urgent need to crush the Ebola menace in a sprint race fashion. There is an equally important task of creating sustainable, home grown healthcare systems in countries with limited economic resources as a marathon endeavor.
We need your help.
Find out more! Donate! Get involved! Make a difference in the World and make it a better place as only you can. Be the agent of Grace in a troubled time.
Help Us Help Them.
Go to our website: www.medicuschristi.org for more information and to donate through our “Click and Pledge” portal.
Dr. Joseph Marotta
Medicus Christi, Ltd.
This week I attended the annual meeting of the American Orthopedic Society of Sports Medicine in Seattle, Washington. During that gathering of some of the most gifted and dedicated physicians in my specialty, I had the great pleasure and privilege to be invited to the group’s yearly Prayer Breakfast. Several years ago, a few members of the society started this adjunct to our educational program to give Faith filled attendees of all Creeds the ability to come together for prayer and reflection. The Breakfast group now numbers over two hundred!
It was heart warming to be part of this event. The key note speaker for the morning was Rueben Mayes, former Washington State, College Hall of Fame and NFL All-pro Running back who is now involved in motivational programs and charitable work.
I was given the opportunity to present Medicus Christi and our plans to establish an Orthopedic Hospital and Learning Center in Ghana to the assembly before the program.
The AOSSM, like other Orthopedic and Medical Societies, is filled with compassionate and caring medical professionals willing to get involved in the development of better healthcare for the poor. Few of these people make a big “production” of their charitable efforts. They quietly pursue their heartfelt ambitions to help the needy in the spirit of service and brotherhood that makes our World a better place. They aren’t looking for financial gain or recognition. These colleagues of mine are the heroes of modern medicine.
Many thanks to the people in the photo above who have blessed me with their friendship and spirituality. From left to right: Eric McCarty, Chris Harner, Rueben Mayes, John Kelly, me and Ed Tingstad.
“May you all live in the light of the Lord”
Dr. Joe Marotta
Members and supporters of Medicus Christi attended the 25th Annual American Cardinals Dinner, hosted by H.E. Timothy Cardinal Dolan. The event was held at the Grand Ball Room of the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York City. Our group filled two tables of sponsorships to benefit the Catholic University of America. We were privileged to have the new Bishop of Albany, NY, The Most Reverend Edward B. Scharfenberger as our honored guest.
The evening was filled rekindling old friendships and making some new ones. MC Board Members-Tom Baldwin, John Walsh, Tim Casserly and their wives along with Fr. Greg Jakubowicz, Mr. and Mrs. Mike Lounsberry, Mr. and Mrs. John Lloyd, Mr. and Mrs. Edward Clancy and Mr. David Budinger joined us.
MC presence at the affair meant more to Catholic University, its President and the other attendees than the price of a ticket. It symbolized our common vision of an ever brightening future for Catholic education in America and the values we all share as Faith-filled, caring people hoping to effect a positive impact on the wider World. There were literally hundreds of generous, like-minded philanthropist, clerics, sponsors, media personalities and well wishers reveling in all that is good and wonderful about our dynamic Church.
The relationships fostered by these interactions will not only continue to enliven the Mission of CUA but pave the wave for further progress in our own endeavors to benefit the needy overseas. It was fantastic to share an evening with so many incredible individuals. People who not only talk a big talk, but also walk the walk in their daily lives, businesses and social interactions. Citizens of character and vision. The movers and shakers of our nation and Faith.
May God bless the Catholic University of America, its Alumni and supporters. May the Lord continue to bestow wisdom and guidance upon the people of Medicus Christi as well. May He grant us the Grace and ability to work together in creating a better future for all.
Dr. Joe Marotta
Our last month has been full of activity here at Medicus Christi. With the help of Mr. Marty Torrey of Captain Consultants, LLC we have resubmitted our grant application for funding from the 2014 U.S. Governments’s USAID overseas aid program. Mr. Torrey, a former Chief of Staff on Capital Hill, has been instrumental in getting our submission in place on time. Thanks also goes out to our diligent grant writer, Eve Wenger. Eve and I revamped last year’s application to fit into a new format and she put it all together by the deadline.
We were blessed in receiving a $15,000 Grant from the Whalen Foundation. This was announced just a few weeks ago. The Whalen family set up this fund to help support Charitable programs like ours based in the Catholic Diocese of Albany. Many thanks to Mr. Mark Woroby for putting us in touch with the administrators of the Foundation in time for this years grant cycle.
In a few weeks I will be meeting with the Executive Director of The Healey International Relief Foundation. HIRF was recently featured in a special that aired on EWTN-“Rising From the Ashes”. This documentary described the horrific 11 year long civil war of Sierra Leone, West Africa. Healey was established, much like MC, to improve the quality of life of suffering people in Third World countries through medical assistance, food banks for the hungry, health care education, clean water, work programs for amputees and basic essentials for orphaned children. By partnering in medical endeavors for the West African Region, both MC and HIRF would become stronger and more able to service the needs of local citizens. Immediate interventions as well as long term educational development is the key.
Next Friday, a number of MC Board Members and supporters will be attending the annual American Cardinals Dinner in NYC. This is a gathering of some of the most influential and generous Catholic philanthropists in the U.S. Included in our group, we are honored to have the newly appointed Bishop of Albany, Edward B. Scharfenberger. H.E. was kind enough to take time out of his hectic schedule to join us at our tables for the event. It should be a very special evening for all of us and for Medicus Christi.
MC is also contacting a number of other groups, individuals and organizations to help us in our work. Building relationships around the World takes time. Communication and interaction with those who have liked-minded goals requires trust and sincerity. There are many wonderful people who share the vision of a better life for our brothers and sisters overseas. Whether its Rotary International, the United Nations, physician groups, Government Health Ministers, Societies of former citizens of West Africa such as GACD(see above)or even the Holy Father himself, partnerships will only develop from a common feeling of great compassion and a commitment to invest what ever it takes to create effective interventions.
I am continually bolstered up by the generosity and energy of many caring people. Everyone receiving this message understands what that means. Thank you for your support and continued involvement. MC is at a cross road and a critical juncture in its development. There is much to do and many hours to go before we sleep.
“Live in the Light of the Lord” “God’s Light!”
Dr. Joe Marotta
On the train somewhere between New York City and Albany:
As Board Member John Walsh and I travel home from a busy day in the Big Apple, there is plenty of time to update everyone on the latest activities of your favorite nonprofit, Medicus Christi.
Today was spent at the Union League Club on 37th Street attending the C3 International U.S.-Arab Healthcare Summit. At left is John and me with Juliana Dreweck of Perceived Brand Marketing. Juliana’s company specializes in Brand development for all kinds organizations and not-for-profit ventures with offices in NYC and Albany. She is very interested in helping us to expand our market image and media exposure.
John and I met many great contacts for MC. Randy Potter, the Founder of C3 and a master of business to business interactions, was the host. Mike Ehlers, an old friend from Siena College, was also involved in the conference organization. Mike is a human capital development/ personnel expert also interested in helping our projects for the poor overseas. I can see many years of future networking opportunities through the extensive national and international relationship building of these two friends.
On the USAID/ASHA Grant application for 2014, we are just about ready to make our submission. I learned a lot in last year’s failed attempt at receiving this important government financing. This time around, we are fortunate to have the help of an experienced ally on Capital Hill, Mr. Marty Torrey. Mr. Torrey has not only put our application before the head of USAID Africa and the Staff of Senator Kirstin Gillibrand, he has gained Medicus Christi’s TORCH/WALC initiative the sponsorship of the President and First Lady of Ghana! Stay tuned for a reception in honor of President Mahama, sponsored by MC, when he visits the UN General Assembly meeting this Fall.
Dr. Carolyn Woo, CEO of Catholic Relief Services has connected us with officials at CRS focused on development for Africa.
Many thanks to Congressman Paul Tonko who has also written a letter of support to USAID on our behalf.
Let’s not forget that Congressman Chris Gibson is still engaged in our mission and backing our grant submission as well. MC is bridging party lines in D.C.!
We look forward to the upcoming Cardinals Dinner in New York City on May 30th. We have about 20 MC supporters and Board Members filling up two tables at the event. More great news. The new Bishop of Albany, Edward Scharfenberger, has graciously accepted our invitation to accompany MC to the dinner as our guest of honor!
Our yearly Board of Director’s Meeting of the organization will be held on July 19th. This to coincide with the visit to the Albany area of Cardinal Turkson. H.E. is traveling to the Capital Region to attend the 30th Anniversary Celebration of the Black Catholic Apostolate of the Albany Diocese.
In addition to applying for the Federal Government’s grant support, we are also submitted requests to The Whalen Foundation of our Capital District and the Breg Corporation. Breg is a World leader in orthopedic brace and ambulatory aid supplies. This would add a great new component to our program’s balanced bone and joint disorder treatment plan.
Our MC intern, Colin Scherff has begun a new “Medicus Christi” Wristband fundraising initiative. Currently, they are only available at my office, my house and on the Campus of Siena College(At Colin’s room). We hope to start selling them at the Siena Campus Store, Samaritan Hospital’s Gift Shop, the Shop at the St. Joseph of Carondelet Provincial House and other retailers. If anyone is interested in offering them for sale at their place of business or retail outlet, please let me know. We will not be selling any of the bracelets on-line. Our Beads-for-Africa Campaign netted about $2,000. Now that we have sold out our supply, we will have to wait for my next trip to Ghana to get more materials.
It looks like I will be traveling to West Africa later in the Summer. This to coincide with the Cardinal’s time there and for meetings with Archbishop Nketsiah, President and Mrs. Mahama, The Ambassador of the U.S. to Ghana in the Capital, CRS, The Health Minister of Ghana as well as other important supporters at Ghana’s Rotary organizations. Of course, much of my time will be spent with the good people of the TORCH/WALC site in Mankessim.
We have an interesting Summer planned for the organization. Please keep us in your prayers and good thoughts.
Always remember to fall asleep with a dream and wake up with a purpose.
Dr. Joe Marotta
I have just returned from the Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgery in New Orleans. Not only was it a great opportunity to “bone” up on some of my orthopedic skills, it was also a chance to reconnect with old friends and mentors as well as make some important progress for Medicus Christi. At the right is a picture of me with two very accomplished and renowned surgeons. Both leaders in the field of bone and joint surgery. Starting on the left, Dr. Chris Harner. Dr. Harner is a sports medicine/arthroscopy authority and Past President of the American Orthopedic Society for Sports Medicine. He is a tremendously compassionate man and is working very hard to advance the efforts of Medicus Christi with his colleagues around the World. Next is Dr. Vernon Tolo. Dr. Tolo is a Past President of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgery and Editor of The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery. JBJS is the premier orthopedic publication in print and on-line. Dr. Tolo was one of my professors at Johns Hopkins when I was a medical student. He was a great inspiration and mentor to me in the field of orthopedics very early on in my professional journey.
During my time at the meeting I had several conferences to discuss the TORCH/WALC project in Ghana. Dr. William Stetson, Chairman of the Academy’s International Committee with Ms. Lynne Dowling, Executive Director of the Committee, were updated on our progress. They have been following the start of our efforts with much interest and encouragement. We hope that our Center overseas will someday be a basis of operation on the African Continent for educational programs sponsored by the AAOS through this Committee.
Similarly, I also met with Drs. William DeLong and Saqib Rehman, members and leaders of the Orthopedic Trauma Association. The OTA is developing educational programs as well through their Humanitarian and International Committees. Their mission is to improve the treatment of trauma related injuries by working with various international societies to upgrade the level of educational opportunities and scholarships on a global basis. Both of these experts work at Temple University Medical School and Hospitals. Once our Center is established in Ghana, they would like to begin a rotating residency training opportunity for their young orthopedic surgeons. This would be a tremendous manpower addition to our facility. Improving both the onsite care capabilities as well as the training capacity of our Learning Center.
Another organization behind our efforts is The American Association of Hip and Knee Surgery. My good friend and fellow orthopedic trainee at the Tufts New England Medical Center Orthopedic Residency Program, Dr. Bill Jiranek, is currently a Vice President of AAHKS. With Bill’s introduction, I was able to sit down with the Executive Director of AAHKS, Mr. Mike Zarski and get his input into ways we might combine our efforts for the benefit of the people of West Africa and beyond. Mr. Zarski was also very supportive of this educational concept which is what makes Medicus Christi and the TORCH/WALC initiative unique.
We made another great new friend during the 5 days I spent in Louisiana. His name is Dr. John Kelly. Dr. Kelly is another well known, prominent Orthopedic Surgeon. His practice specializes in arthroscopic surgery and sports medicine. In addition to his many practice and academic pursuits, John is a devout Christian with incredible Faith, character, compassion and a firm belief in service to others. He has now become a great supporter of our work overseas and I hope to learn from his wisdom as we move forward.
My other meetings in New Orleans included follow-up discussions with The Stryker Corporation, The Arthrex Corporation and Medtronic, Inc. I was also introduced to the brace manufacturers, Breg and Don Joy.
Our fund raising efforts include an ongoing grant submission to USAID/ASHA to provide the monies for our building project. Last week, I spoke at the annual meeting of the Ghanaian Association of the Capital District. Dr. Kaka Dey, President of that Association, has offered to introduce me to a similar association in D.C. that includes West African people living throughout the United States.
Our intern, Colin Scherff, has created a new Medicus Christi brochure. He has also been upgrading our website, Facebook page and Twitter account. By next semester, the MC Club at Siena College should be welcoming its first group of students interested in our service projects.
I plan to return to Ghana this Summer to meet with Archbishop Nketsiah as well as other Church officials, Ghanaian government authorities and the new Ambassador to Ghana from the United States, Mr. Gene A. Cretz. How about this; Mr. Cretz hails from Albany, NY! He attended the Univ. of Rochester and did his graduate work at the Univ. of Buffalo.
This Thursday, Siena is welcoming Dr Carolyn Woo. Dr. Woo is the new President and CEO of Catholic Relief Services. I would encourage everyone to attend her talk at the St. Clare Leadership Series: Ours to do-Woman Leading the Way, “The Business of Servant Leadership: Personal Stories and Global Perspectives”. It will be held at the Sarazen Student Union, Maloney Great Room at 7PM.
As always, I like to close my report with a spiritual thought to ponder. “Be the Salt of the Earth and the Light of the World” Matt 5:13-16
I hope everyone has a great St. Patricks’s Day. By the way, St. Joseph’s Day is March 19th as well.
Dr. Joe Marotta
Welcome to 2014! Last year saw incredible expansion of MC’s national and international profile. The coming months promise even more development of our program’s reach as we enter a new phase of awareness building.
I would like to officially welcome our new Medicus Christi Marketing Intern, Colin Scherff. Colin is a Junior at Siena. He was a member of the Marketing classes that took on our nonprofit as a term project for Professor Cheryl Buff last semester. He and the other students did a great job researching and creating a media/marketing profile for us. Now, with the help of Dr. Buff, he will be helping to upgrade a number of important phases of our public “persona”. This includes our social media campaigns, our web page, radio and TV marketing and, most interestingly, Colin will be helping to start the Siena College “Medicus Christi Club”. The MC Club, made up of current Siena students, will become the backbone of the organization’s ongoing relationship with the School. Over time we hope to have this student activity become involved with on campus campaigns, volunteerism and public relations for the work we are doing overseas.
Last week I participated in MC’s first radio interview spot. I was contacted by Producer Matt Swain of EWTN Radio and our work was featured on the “Son Rise Morning Show” with Brian Patrick. The show, broadcast nationally on the Sirius Satellite Network, gave us our first truly nationwide media exposure.
Later this month I will be attending a function sponsored by the Flora Kippins Foundation, speaking on behalf of Medicus Christi. Another presentation will be given at the yearly meeting of the Ghanaian Association of the Capital District on Saturday, March 8th at the Polish Community Center.
In mid-March I head to New Orleans for a meeting of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgery. There I will be presenting our endeavor to a number of Orthopedic Societies and potential Corporate sponsors.
We continue to explore support from Rotary International, The United Nations, various private foundations, the United Way Campaign and government sources.
If you haven’t had the chance as yet, please visit our Indiegogo crowd funding site “Beads for Africa”. There are about 9 days left in this fund raising campaign. View our latest activities, make a donation or just check out our latest photos and comments. Let me know what you think. The site can be opened on the web at:
Stay tuned for upgrades to our website, Facebook pages, Twitter page and media campaign. Please feel free to contact me with feedback. Are we doing a good job getting the word out? What can we do better? 2014 promises to be a pivotal year for our endeavor to help the poor in Africa achieve better medical care. We need your help.
“I will go Lord, if you need me. I have heard you calling in the night.”
Peace and All Good
Dr. Joe Marotta
Beads for Africa
Medicus Christi announces a new fund raising campaign. Beads for Africa is a project on the Crowd Funding site, Indiegogo that offers African Costume Jewelry in return for donations to our TORCH/WALC program.
With the help of the Sisters of the Infant Jesus in Ghana and the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet, pieces of jewelry including bracelets and necklaces are being made using authentic African materials.
Find out more at the Indiegogo site: www.indiegogo.com/projects/beads-for-africa/x/5746030
Tell your friends and share this site across the Social Media World to help us improve the healthcare services of our brothers and sisters in need.