September 30, 2009
by Jenny Eaton Dyer, Ph.D.
Last night we had a really fantastic Global Health Gathering at the Frist home. Welcoming all Nonprofits who were dedicated to Global Health issues (or Millennium Development Goals) in Tennessee, we had an array of groups who attended who had traveled from as far away as Johnson City or Memphis.
These great groups, all who have joined the Tennessee Global Health Coalition, provide aid and service around the world. They provide beds, shoes, education and clean water for the world's poorest. Some offer leadership training, mental health services and a haven for child soldiers. We have groups who fight trafficking in all forms, and we have groups who train community health workers to provide better health care in forgotten corners of the world.
To be in a room with these heroes and learn from and about their great work was so encouraging for everyone.
Big Kenny (www.bigkenny.tv) and his beautiful wife, Christiev, came (www.loveeverybody.com) and shared their latest experience in the Sudan. He played his new song, "Forgiveness" with a collage of photos from the trip. His gift is storytelling, and he's out to change the world.
Lewis Lavine, president of Center for Nonprofit Management (www.cnm.org), joined us to offer his organization as a resource for the nonprofit groups.
And, Senator Frist shared his story of getting involved in global health policy, the commitment to saving lives in medicine and politics, and the trajectory of Hope Through Healing Hands' Global Health Coalition for Tennessee.
Everyone enjoyed Moe's burritos and guacamole, and I think all left realizing that Tennessee indeed has a robust global health community of works that can and will be showcased. After a "speed-dating" for nonprofits ice-breaker (Kenny said it was louder in the Frist's hall last night than in a good bar!), we prompted small group discussion for these groups to think on ways to work together.
We are excited to see what the future holds for these amazing groups and partnerships.
Courtesy of Jena Nardella: From left -- Senator Frist, Jenny Dyer, Sten Vermund, Big Kenny Alphin
Frist Basement Hallway: "Nonprofit Speed-Dating"
Frist Basement: Small Group Discussion--Africa Group