| Benchen Free Clinic
Associated with Benchen Monastery is the "Benchen Monastery Free Clinic". This was established in 1994 by Ven. Tenga Rinpoche in order to serve the needs of the monastery and the local community of both native Nepalese and Tibetan refugees. The clinic has been providing general and primary care since then, with the funding for this provided by the monastery and some vital foreign donations. For its patients, the clinic is completely free, with no charges for either treatment or medicine. The clinic also sponsors the treatment of its patients that need to go on to receive hospital or other specialised treatment or surgery.
Because of the increasing burden of supporting this project, the monastery requested help from the Himalayan Medical Foundation. In the partnership that has subsequently developed, the Foundation is covering mainly the costs of medicine and salaries, and the monastery is covering the clinic infrastructure costs and external medical expenses such as surgery, and so forth. HE. Sangye Nyenpa Rinpoche, Ven. Tenga Rinpoche, and Benchen monastery are deeply indebted to both individual sponsors and the Himalayan Medical Foundation for all their help so far.
Since the Sept. of 1998 the clinic has extended its services to include dentistry. Due to the personal enthusiasm of Ven. Tenga Rinpoche for this project, a Polish dentist, Dr. Wojtek Ryncarz and his World Health Foundation, first kindly offered both equipment and his own time and effort towards this. However, seeing the great need in the area for dental services - people have been coming to the clinic from much further afield than just the local community - he has now initiated and donates extension buildings of the clinic. We improve the dental office and other departments we are able to offer.
Demand for the clinic's services remains strong. The main clinic treats between 20 and 30 people each day, and the dentist treats on average 20 peoples a day. However, the needs of the local community demand that we expand our services in the future. For example, we currently have no X-ray equipment, and there are many other facilities and types of treatment that would be expected in a modern clinic that would greatly benefit the clinic's patients. Even with the help of the Himalayan Medical Foundation and World Health Foundation, the burden on Benchen Monastery of providing this increasing level of medical service remains high. We would like to invite help in this effort from anybody who may be able to provide it. That help could be in the form of cash donations, medicines, equipment, or of course, physical help in the clinic. One way of making cash sponsorship is through our German organisation, Lotus Direct Help or our Danish organisation Benchen Free Medical Foundation Denmark
If you are able to help in some ways, please contact:
Tshering Phuntsok. (Director)
Benchen Free Clinic.
PO Box 2072.
Fax: +9771 270581.
Lotus Direkthilfe e.V.
Fax: + 49 221 607439
Benchen Free Medical Foundation Denmark
c/o Grethe Poulsen
Godthåbsvej 12 B, st.th.
DK 2000 Frederiksberg