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King University Alumnae Serve in Healthcare Ministry in Ngoswani, Kenya

BRISTOL, Tenn., January 26, 2017 – In August and September 2016, Octavia “Tae” Lewis-Rand (’16) and MacKenzie LeMay (’16) traveled from the U.S. to Ngoswani, Kenya in Southwest Africa to serve as missionaries in a health center with New Frontiers Health Force.

The two alumnae said their wisdom from their experience is, “If God calls you somewhere, trust Him and go. If you want God to move in your life, you have to expect to be uncomfortable. You have to be uncomfortable for God to move in your life.”

While in Ngoswani, the two assisted with the clinic, pharmacy, and OB/GYN. “The first night, we saw a birth,” said LeMay. “Unfortunately, [the baby] died the next morning,” added Lewis-Rand. “Later that same week, we helped a 13-year-old boy who, while herding his cattle, was gored by a wild buffalo. He recovered and is alive today.”

Lewis-Rand and LeMay also experienced a drowning case, orthopedic case, blood work, vaccinations, and antenatal exams. A pastor and doctor along with Kenyan nationals run the medical clinic, with assistance from volunteers like Lewis-Rand and LeMay.

In addition to providing medical assistance, the two worked with the children in the community. “We ended up having a [Vacation Bible School], where a translator would help us share Bible stories. We played games with them and prayed with them. I personally had the privilege of leading the first person I ever have to Christ – a little girl named Naomi,” said LeMay.

When asked why travel to Africa to serve as medical missionaries, both quickly responded they listened to a call by God to go. Lewis-Rand said, “If you had asked me years before if I would do a trip like this, I would have said no. I had to pray and fast about this; I take stuff like this seriously. If you aren’t ready spiritually, it can drain you; this [trip] is something God put on my heart. I feel privileged to help people not only medically but also help them spiritually. The crazy thing is I went there to tell people about Jesus, but I saw Jesus through them. It helped us both!”

LeMay echoed Lewis-Rand’s sentiments. “Two years ago, God put it on my heart, [short-term medical missions], that it was what I needed to focus on.” Although her family was hesitant about such a big journey, LeMay told them the money for the trip would be there if God means for me to go. “There was such an outpouring of love and support; everything was provided.” Lewis-Rand said, “In addition to the funds, the amount of prayers we received from loved ones and even from people we didn’t know – it was awesome!”

“It felt like we were in the middle of nowhere,” said Lewis-Rand. “The closest market was about an hour and a half to two hours away from the remote village in which we stayed.” LeMay added, “[Ngoswani] had traditional mud huts for homes - some homes and stores made out of shipping containers - plus the New Frontiers medical facility. There were maybe 30 buildings. There is no electricity. Everything runs on solar or occasionally by generator for specific medical purposes. There was no running water, only water from a well.”

“After the trip to Kenya, we both feel we could conquer the world,” said LeMay. Future plans for both Octavia Lewis-Rand and MacKenzie LeMay include medical school. Both are taking a gap year before they begin their next adventure. Columbus, Ga., native Octavia Lewis-Rand received her bachelor’s degree in Molecular and Cellular Biology in May 2016, while Winston-Salem, N.C., native MacKenzie LeMay received her baccalaureate in Neuroscience in Aug. 2016.

New Frontiers Health Force, a faith-based non-profit organization, has spent the past 20 years doing global medical missions work which has included healthcare, disaster relief, education, and promoting hope with volunteer teams in 35 countries. For the past 10 years, NFHF has been based in Ngoswani, Kenya where they operate a full-time health center and primary school.

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