February Jefferson Award winner: Chris Seim
It's a place that has no health care, and for two weeks every year, one Omaha man makes sure those in Uganda have it.
That’s why he's February’s Jefferson Award winner.
Each month FOX 42 partners with Nebraska Medicine to honor those making a difference.
“Go where there's no path and leave a trail” is what Chris Seim has made his life's mission.
"We go in the far-reaching areas of the district so that we can bring the services we provide to them," he said.
Ten years ago, he went on his first mission trip to Belize.
Seim said, "A few years after I started going, I learned how to fit people for eyeglasses, and we were giving out prescription eyeglasses.”
He says he wanted that path to grow, so he and a group of physicians headed to Uganda.
"We want to be able to see a minimum of 2,000 people,” Seim said.
For two weeks each November, they do malaria and HIV testing and hand out insect repellents and eyeglasses.
"We'll generally have between 1 and 300 people waiting for us when we get to the school," Seim said.
He recalls the story of one woman looking for help for a 10-month-old who weighed only 9 pounds.
"Just severely malnourished,” Seim said. “We were able to get that child transportation to a medical facility in an urban area."
Seim hopes his group will leave a lasting imprint on the country and its people.
He said, "If we can get more physicians another pharmacist, maybe some more nurses we're hoping we can see even more people."
Someday, he would like to bring along his own children.
“There's so much need and it's so rewarding to be able to help them,” Seim said. “I really want to find ways to do more."