Page 4 - Bulletin Spring 2015
P. 4

President’s Message
It has been a five year journey to finally reach the highest honoured position of the Manitoba Dental Association.........President. And as wonderful as that sounds, I realize, as I reflect on these years, that I did not get here as a result of anything I have accomplished but has everything to do with the people who make up the Manitoba Dental Association.......our volunteers. To put it in perspective, that’s how I got started and this is what I still am today.
A volunteer is defined as a person who freely gives of his/her time, effort and resources without expectation of anything in return. At the heart of every volunteer is empathy.....the ability to identify with or understand another’s situation or feelings. As dental professionals, we aspired to the profession through this common thread. We simply find the ability to help others to be rewarding.
So it is only natural and not surprising that many of us volunteer, in some capacity, outside of our busy work life. The gift of time is precious and yet, we give that time and use it to bring awareness and recognition of various issues for the sole purpose of helping others or being part of something to give back to a worthy cause or purpose. The dedication, commitment and tireless work of our volunteers make up the foundation of the MDA.
As President, I have the enviable position to observe all our MDA Committees (and there are many) and their functions. I get to see you, our volunteers, in action. These Committees meet several times a year working on issues, projects and initiatives to enable the MDA to grow, evolve and be able to support not only our members but also help to improve the oral health of all Manitobans. The profession of dentistry is never stagnant. It is dynamic.....always changing and we must change with it. Our Committees work hard to anticipate the changing landscape of dentistry and strategize the best means to engage it. For all your efforts, I thank you.
But as a new graduate, did you know what MDA is all about?? Here are some interesting facts on the history of the Manitoba Dental Association taken right from our own website:
“The first dentist to enter Manitoba was in 1877. By 1883. it became evident that there was a need to protect the health and welfare of the public and guard the ideals of the profession. Fifteen dentists in the Province saw to the passing of the first Dental Act on July 7, 1883. Since then, there have been 90 Presidents
Dentistry is currently structured with the Manitoba Dental Association performing two major functions: (1) protection of the public, and (2) balancing of the interest of the members to ensure meeting the best nterests of the public. The role the MDA has of advancing the interests of members has grown out of the desire of dentists not through legislated responsibilities.”
I believe the last statement is the fundamental reason why we volunteer. It speaks to the core of who we are as a profession. When we desire to work together, whether it be on the Board, a Committee, or participate in a dental event, we are part of something greater than ourselves.... contributing our skills
and knowledge to make a difference in someone else’s life. Isn’t
that worth a few nights a year to attend Committee meetings or volunteer at Siloam Mission, a weekend to help out at Tooth Fairy Saturday or at the Open Wide Clinic at the College of Dentistry or at the Oral Cancer Screening Event? You don’t need to travel abroad to contribute to a dental mission. You need not look any further than your own backyard. The opportunity to help those less fortunate or challenged in accessing reasonable dental care can reap rewards far greater than that which is measured in dollars and cents. And yes, there will be a time in your life when there just isn’t enough hours in the day to volunteer. Then consider making a financial donation
to organizations that advocate and aid in provision of dental care to those who need it, if that is the most you can do at the time. Remember, to volunteer is to give. Giving can take many forms.
It has been a privilege to serve the Manitoba Dental Association
in my capacity as a Board member and now as your President. However, I take greater pride in my role as a member volunteer. The experience has given me the opportunity to learn so much about dentistry beyond the four walls of my own dental practice. A very wise dentist (Dr. Amarjit Rihal) once told me “You will never go wrong doing what’s right. If it’s worth doing it right, then you will find the time.”
Make the most of your talents with the time that you have. All the best to you,
Dr. Nancy Auyeung MDA Prseident

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