There are some people in the world who are prepared to look beyond their own personal business interests and are willing to help their fellow citizens when an unusual request comes their way. You, Dr Archer are one of these special people.
There is no connection between your dental practice and the not for profit organization Ostomy Toronto, other than you have a patient who has had ostomy surgery. Out of the blue you were asked to provide some “goodies” for the “goodie bags” that were handed out to all persons attending our conference this past August.
Now first of all, what conference and what has it to do with dental practices? Well, this conference was hosted by Ostomy Toronto on behalf of the United Ostomy Association of Canada Inc (UOAC). Never heard of this association; not surprising “ostomy” is not a household word.
There is probably no surgical procedure that produces more misunderstanding and fear than an “ostomy”. An “ostomy” is a surgically formed opening on the surface of the abdomen through which bodily wastes are eliminated. Conditions that call for this procedure are cancer of the colon and rectum, cancer of the bladder, physical trauma, congenital disorders, bowel obstructions and complications of Ulcerative Colitis and Crohn’s disease.
The Toronto Ostomy Community is made up of a group of people who have successfully transitioned to living with an ostomy. We swim, dance, work, travel and participate in activities just as we did before surgery. We believe that living with an ostomy does not define the individual. In fact, a person with an ostomy is unrecognizable on the street.
Ostomy Toronto is just one chapter that belongs to the national organization; there are some forty plus chapters across Canada. We hold a conference every two years; including this past August in Toronto. This year our theme was “Caring in a Changing World.”
There are so many ways that we can show caring and you, Dr. Archer, certainly demonstrated that you care in helping others. For those of us who live with a stoma, we know how important it is that we take care of our diet and that we chew properly. You provided two hundred toothbrushes together with dental floss for our attendees. No excuse for our attendees to fail to brush and floss their teeth!
Mahatma Gandhi once said, “You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” Dr Archer, from your actions and donations you embody this change. Thank you again for your support of Ostomy Toronto and the United Ostomy Association of Canada Inc. by giving an important donation to each attendee at our conference.
Di Bracken, Conference Chair