It all started in May 2010 when Shaine, my then-26 year old darling daughter, asked me if I would go on a volunteer medical trip with her overseas. She knew just which buttons to push: volunteer, medical, midwifery, overseas, mother-daughter time.
Why Mongolia? Our requirements were to find a volunteer project in a developing country that was non-religiously affiliated, that would offer flexible time frame commitments, and that could accommodate both Shaine's curiosity about medical care and my interest in midwifery. An opportunity to become involved in Mongolia, out of scores of countries, won out.
The Maternal and Child Health Research Institute is the largest maternity hospital in the country, located in an imposing six-storied building in Ulaanbaatar where 9612 babies were born in 2009. This is the hospital where Shaine and I embraced our Mongolian health care experience.