With Judy Simser’s arrival late last night, the Mobile Mission team is now all together here in Vietnam. Though most of us hadn’t met each other before, we all quickly jelled over dinner. This is a great group of vibrant, fun professionals who are all very passionate about their work.
Lea Watson arrived first on Friday night – an auditory verbal therapist with over 30 years of experience and her own practice in Massachusetts. Our audiologists Jane Madell and Joanne Restivo landed on Saturday. Jane is nationally known for her work with young children who have severe and profound hearing loss, and selection and management of hearing aids and cochlear implants. Joanne Restivo is a pediatric audiologist for New York Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center. Charlotte Ducote settled in shortly after; she is Director, Division of Communicative Disorders, at Ochsner Health System in New Orleans, and has served as a speech-language pathologist for Operation Smile’s Vietnam team for over a decade. Judy Simser is an internationally-acclaimed speaker on the education of children with hearing loss and the former director of the Auditory-Verbal Program at the Children’s Hospital in Ottawa, Canada.
We’ve got a great group and I have no doubt we’re in for a terrific adventure ahead. We’re rolling out this morning for the 5 hour drive to Dalat and the Lam Dong School for Hearing Impaired Children. Thuy Nguyen, director of Thuan An Center is riding along with us. We have four boxes and two bags of toys donated by local HCMC expats and a hearing aid distributor, reams of presentation materials, audiology equipment, and piles of suitcases in our van. Its jammed packed….but we’re all excited to get going!