• Reflections – Dr Hasan Sarwar

    I have been heavily involved with cleft surgery in Bangladesh from 1998 and running Aussi Bangla Smile team visits from 2007 with help from the Australian community. Our Bangladeshi patients love Australian people because they are very generous and have a very soft heart for humanity.

    The ongoing Aussi Bangla Smile team is very small, consisting mainly of dedicated theatre nursing staff with great support from our other hospital colleagues, family, friends, and local community groups and businesses.

    The 2011 visit team consisted of recovery nurses, scrub nurses, anaesthetists,  surgeons, and local (Bangladeshi) team members. As our team was very well trained and well equipped, we were able to do many complex cleft operations in a remote hospital set up in Bangladesh. In the 2011 visit we performed 115 operations.  Thanks must go to the DAK Foundation, Australia, Dave and Kerry Rickards for donating vital signs and other monitors which were really helpful.

    Team members donate their own airfare and personal costs separately, but each visit still costs about AU$25,000 in Bangaldesh. This provides for the cost of all operations and associated costs, e.g., patient and carer transport. All of this money comes from kind donations from the Australian community. Thank you for your kind support.

    The money needed for this project is raised by various fundraising activities, e.g., trivia nights, which require a lot of work to be done. I would like to thank the few people who have been holding up this Aussi Bangla ‘umbrella’ since 2007 as great volunteers:

    Barbara Mitchell (our team coordinator and senior scrub nurse) and her husband Cliff Mitchell (IT support manager) – a wonderful couple, great heart, always thinking about how we can run our project smoothly and how we can make more smiling faces in Bangladesh. Thanks Barb and Cliff for supporting the Aussi Bangla Smile teams.

    Rotary (RAWCS), Mr Jack Elliott, Treasurer – Jack maintains and runs many Rotary international projects all over the world. We are really grateful to Mr Frank Protelli, Secretray of Nepean Rotary, and Mr Mollah and Mr Kabir from Dhaka Rotary, for their great contribution and all the Rotary support  for the team. Without their support, we couldn’t contemplate our work in Bangladesh.

    Impact foundation Bangladesh – wonderful Bangladeshi people like Mr Mansur Ahmed Chaudhury working over there. They are our platform on which to work in Bangladesh. Jibon Tori  is a wonderful  floating hospital – an excellent idea to serve the underprivileged people at their door. The Jibon Mela is a very good Impact Foundation land Hospital.  Our team love Impact in every aspect – they are unparalleled.

    My Bangladeshi colleages, Dr Tareq, Dr Sadeq, Dr Rashed (plastic surgeon), Dr Bodiul (faciomaxillay surgeon), Dr Bijoy (paediatric surgeon) and other local doctors. Anaesthesiologist Dr Dilip and nurses who are always  joining  with our team to make our trips successful – we are really grateful to them.

    I must also mention the Bangladesh High Commission in Australia and the Australian High Commission in Bangladesh, who provide our visas and other supportive documents for entry into Bangladesh.

    Please keep up your support so one day we will have made a big difference in the world with your help.

    Thank you once again,

    Dr Hasan Sarwar

    Team Leader


    One response to “Reflections – Dr Hasan Sarwar”

    1. Very nice to know about aussi bangla smile through you.
      Thanks a lot for your support for the poor patients of our country Bangladesh.

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