271 E M-35, Gwinn, MI 49841 | Get Directions
Monday - Thursday 8:00 am - 4:30 pm

Venezuela Mission via Cucuta, Colombia, March 2019

As food and medicine became scarcer, as the currency of Venezuela became worthless due to hyperinflation, as the government seized more and more businesses and left millions of people jobless, a great emigration began to take place.  Over 4 million Venezuelans have left in search of a better life in the last few years, many of them walking thousands of miles to reach a new life.

Cucuta is in Colombia less than a mile from the western border of Venezuela.  Flying Doctor’s of America paired up with the church Casa de Paso Divina Providencia to provide medical, dental and chiropractic care for the people affected by this crisis.  Some people were traveling on their way through to a new life.  For instance, I met a woman who was walking to Peru. Some people lived across the border in Venezuela and came to the church in Colombia for food and returned to Venezuela at night.

The church provided about 4,000 meals per day to the people in need, a breakfast and a lunch.  When I inquired, “Why not dinner?” I was told that the Venezuelans needed to cross a deep ravine to get to this church.  They needed to do this in the daylight.  Close to the equator you start losing daylight shortly after 5 PM.  The journey was too dangerous to do at night, so people needed to be home by dinner time.  There actually is a bridge that connects to Venezuela nearby, however the Venezuelan government closed the bridge except by special permission (it had been like this for several months during the time we were there), forcing the people to travel down through the ravine to get to Colombia for food and medicine.  For those passing through, they also needed to be somewhere else by nightfall since the church provided many things, but sleeping quarters was not one of them.  Hopefully by nightfall or shortly thereafter the traveling refugees had found shelter at the next refugee camp or somewhere else.  It’s great to see what one can learn from asking a question.

We got to care for about 600 people during this mission.  Flying Doctors of America also gave us the chance to visit a refugee camp located on the route through Colombia.  I’ve enclosed a couple photos of the camp and of the purse made of the now worthless Venezuelan Bolivars.  It was a very eye-opening mission, and different from the other missions I went on.  Other missions I had previously been on served poor populations, usually people who had lived in poverty for generations.

This mission to Cucuta served all sorts of people, but there was a former middle class that made up a decent portion of the population.  One couldn’t judge from their clothes necessarily since on many missions we see people wearing clothes that have been donated (one could tell by the occasional English writing on the shirts). But I could judge that some of the people I was caring for were not always in poverty because some of the teens were in braces.  Braces are something a middle-class family can afford, not a family living in poverty.  As I asked to hear their stories, I learned that the children had braces put on when things were good, but then when the world was turned upside down, many children were stuck in braces.  Can you imagine?  Life is ok.  Your teen is getting his/her teeth straightened.  Suddenly, the world isn’t what it once was, you are struggling to survive, and your child is stuck in braces? What a lesson in gratitude!

I was very thankful to be able to help some of these wonderful people affected by the crisis in Venezuela and to be reminded of how fortunate that I and many people living in the United States are each day of our lives to have a stable roof over our heads and food in our bellies.

If you’re curious about Flying Doctors of America or about Casa de Paso Divina Providencia or want to find out how you can help them, here is where you can find out more:

The Church hosting about 4000 meals per day for Venezuelan refugees.  Follow what they're up to on their Facebook Page at  https://www.facebook.com/daca174/

The Church hosting about 4000 meals per day for Venezuelan refugees.  Follow what they’re up to on their Facebook Page at  https://www.facebook.com/daca174/

Dr. Beggxis Leiberg, Dr. Gwen Buck, Dr. Chip Carin

Dr. Beggxis Leiberg, Dr. Gwen Buck, Dr. Chip Carin

This is one of the refugee camps along the route from Venezuela through Colombia to Peru.  People can receive food and a night's rest here.

This is one of the refugee camps along the route from Venezuela through Colombia to Peru.  People can receive food and a night’s rest here.

The Venezuelan currency became so worthless from hyperinflation that it is used for crafts.  A Venezuelan woman working at the refugee camp we visited made this purse out of Venezuelan Bolivars.

The Venezuelan currency became so worthless from hyperinflation that it is used for crafts.  A Venezuelan woman working at the refugee camp we visited made this purse out of Venezuelan Bolivars.

I stared at this plaque for several minutes as I felt so touched that so many people around the world care for the strangers they've never met in crisis in Venezuela

I stared at this plaque for several minutes as I felt so touched that so many people around the world care for the strangers they’ve never met in crisis in Venezuela.

This little cutie got fluorescent vampire teeth as a prize after his dental visit with us.

This little cutie got fluorescent vampire teeth as a prize after his dental visit with us.

Food preparation by volunteers for the refugees and one shift of people eating breakfast

Food preparation by volunteers for the refugees and one shift of people eating breakfast

Food preparation by volunteers for the refugees and one shift of people eating breakfast

This woman wanted her photo taken with me after helping her son.

This woman wanted her photo taken with me after helping her son.

 

 

Menu
Need help?
Appointments
Need help?

"*" indicates required fields

Step 1 of 2

Schedule Appointment: STEP 1 OF 2

When would be most convenient for you?

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Helpful Resources

Below are links you may find helpful when scheduling an appointment with us.

Office Amenities

We know that coming to the dentist isn’t on the top of your list of fun things to do, that’s why we do everything we can to make your visits relaxed, comfortable, and convenient.

Some of our office amenities include:

  • Electronic forms & claims
  • Guru educational videos
  • Paperless charting
  • Massage chairs
  • Kids play area
  • Video games
  • TV monitors
  • iPods
Notifications
Latest Articles

DDS vs. DMD: A Dental Degree Breakdown

If you are looking for a dentist in Gwinn, MI, you may have picked up...

DDS vs. DMD: A Dental Degree Breakdown (featured image)

Dentistry in the Digital Age

Technology has changed nearly every aspect of human life and modern...

Dentistry in the Digital Age (featured image)

Silver Diamine Fluoride: An Affordable Filling Alternative

Silver diamine fluoride (SDF) is an antibiotic topical liquid...

Silver Diamine Fluoride: An Affordable Filling Alternative (featured image)
Follow Us On Social Media

Facebook

Stay informed on updates and upcoming events from our office.

YouTube

Subscribe to our YouTube channel.

Instagram

View fun photos and follow our team on Instagram.

Your Privacy
Privacy Policy

This privacy notice discloses our privacy practices and the use of Google Analytics 4(GA4), an analytic advertising feature. This privacy notice applies solely to information collected by this website and the GA4 platform. It will notify you of the following:

  1. What personally identifiable information is collected from you through the website and GA4 platform, how it is used, and with whom it may be shared.
  2. The choices available to you regarding the use of your data.
  3. The security procedures in place to protect the misuse of your information.
  4. How you can correct any inaccuracies in the information.

Information Collection, Use, and Sharing
We only have access to/collect information that you voluntarily give us via email or other direct contact from you. We will not sell or rent this information to anyone.

We will use your information to respond to you, regarding the reason you contacted us. Unless you ask us not to, we may contact you via email in the future to tell you about specials, new products or services, or changes to this privacy policy.

While Northern Trails Dental Care is the primary data controller, Google, in the context of providing Google Analytics service, acts as a data processor. We use Google Analytics 4, a widely recognized web analytics service provided by Google, Inc., to track user interactions and gather data for advertising purposes. As a third-party vendor, Google Analytics operates independently and maintains its own privacy policy, which can be found at https://policies.google.com/privacy. We carefully select our third-party vendors for their commitment to user privacy and adherence to data protection standards. As part of our ongoing commitment to your privacy, we implement measures to ensure that services like GA4 comply with our high standards of data protection.

GA4 collects certain personally identifiable information from you as you interact with our website. This information includes but is not limited to your device ID, IP address, and geographic location. The information collected through GA4 is used to analyze user behavior, optimize our website’s performance, and tailor our content to better serve your needs. This data is compiled and anonymized, ensuring that it cannot be linked back to individual users.

Please note that GA4 may share the information collected with Google and other third-party service providers to enable data processing and reporting on website usage. However, we will not sell, rent, or share your information, especially your personally identifiable information, with any third party outside of our organization.

Your Access to and Control Over Information
You have certain rights regarding the data collected by GA4. You have the right to do the following at any time by contacting us via the email address or phone number given on our website:

  • See what data we have about you, if any.
  • Have us delete any data we have about you.
  • Express any concern you have about our use of your data.

In addition to opting out of any future communications from us at any time, you may also opt out of the GA4 feature if you so choose. You can opt out of the GA4 Advertising Features we use through Ads Settings, Ad Settings for mobile apps, or through the NAI’s. This link points to Google Analytics’ currently available opt-outs for the web https://tools.google.com/dlpage/gaoptout/

Security
We take precautions to protect your information. When you submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected both online and offline. GA4 also follows industry best practices to protect your data both online and offline.

To ensure data protection while we are using GA4, we are implementing additional security measures that include and are not limited to:

  • limiting data access,
  • using secure protocols,
  • managing data sharing with Google

Wherever we collect sensitive information (such as credit card data), that information is encrypted and transmitted to us in a secure way. You can verify this by looking for a lock icon in the address bar and looking for “https” at the beginning of the address of the Web page.

While we use encryption to protect sensitive information transmitted online, we also protect your information offline. Only employees who need the information to perform a specific job (for example, billing or customer service) are granted access to personally identifiable information. The computers/servers in which we store personally identifiable information are kept in a secure environment.

Contact Us
If you have any concerns about the use of GA4 or believe that we are not abiding by this privacy policy, please contact us immediately. We are committed to addressing any privacy-related issues promptly and transparently.

By using our website and consenting to the use of GA4, you acknowledge and agree to the data collection and processing practices described in this notice. For more information about GA4 and its privacy practices, please review Google’s Privacy Policy on this link https://policies.google.com/privacy.

If you feel that we are not abiding by this privacy policy, you should contact us immediately.

Notice of Privacy Practices
Notice of Privacy Practices

This privacy notice discloses the privacy practices for our website. This privacy notice applies solely to information collected by this website. It will notify you of the following:

  1. What personally identifiable information is collected from you through the website, how it is used and with whom it may be shared.
  2. What choices are available to you regarding the use of your data.
  3. The security procedures in place to protect the misuse of your information.
  4. How you can correct any inaccuracies in the information.

Information Collection, Use, and Sharing
When Personal Health Information (PHI) is requested, we abide by all Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) rules and regulations to protect your information and privacy. We are required by applicable federal and state law to maintain the privacy of your health information. We are also required to give you this Notice about our privacy practices, our legal duties, and our rights concerning your health information. We must follow the privacy practices that are described in this Notice while it is in effect. This notice takes effect January 1, 2019, and will remain in effect until we replace it. We reserve the right to change our privacy practices and the terms of this Notice at any time, provided such changes are permitted by applicable law. We reserve the right to make the changes in our privacy practices and the new terms of our Notice effective for all health information that we maintain, including health information we created or received before we made the changes. Before we make a significant change in our privacy practices, we will change this Notice and make the new Notice available upon request. You may request a copy of our Notice at any time. For more information about our privacy practices, or for additional copies of this Notice, please contact us using the information listed at the end of this Notice.

Wherever we request sensitive information (such as personal health information (PHI)), that information is encrypted and transmitted to us in a secure way. You can verify this by looking for a lock icon in the address bar and looking for “https” at the beginning of the address of the Web page.

We are the sole owners of the information collected on this site. We only have access to/collect information that you voluntarily give us via email or other direct contact from you. We will not sell or rent this information to anyone.

We will use your information to respond to you, regarding the reason you contacted us. We will not share your information with any third party outside of our organization, other than to perform quality of service analysis and as necessary to fulfill your request, e.g. to respond to your queries. We may use your information to review our interactions with you and to help us improve and provide you with the best experience possible.

Unless you ask us not to, we may contact you via email in the future to tell you about specials, new products or services, or changes to this privacy policy.

Your Access to and Control Over Information
You may opt out of any future contacts from us at any time. You can do the following at any time by contacting us via the email address or phone number given on our website:

  • See what data we have about you, if any.
  • Change/correct any data we have about you.
  • Have us delete any data we have about you.
  • Express any concern you have about our use of your data.
  • Revoke an authorization previously made
  • You have additional rights, please contact the office for the latest copy of our Notice of Privacy Practices and to ask any questions.

Security
We take precautions to protect your information. When you submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected both online and offline.

Wherever we collect sensitive information (such as personal health information or credit card data), that information is encrypted and transmitted to us in a secure way. You can verify this by looking for a lock icon in the address bar and looking for “https” at the beginning of the address of the Web page.

While we use encryption to protect sensitive information transmitted online, we also protect your information offline. Only employees who need the information to perform a specific job (for example: billing or customer service) are granted access to personally identifiable information. The computers/servers in which we store personally identifiable information are kept in a secure environment.

If you feel that we are not complying with your rights, you should contact us immediately via telephone or email. You also have the right to contact Health and Human Services (HHS) (https://www.hhs.gov/hipaa/filing-a-complaint/). We will not retaliate against you for filing a complaint.

Terms of Service
Terms of Service

Entering this site or the links accessible through this site, you agree to be bound by this agreement. The information and the resources contained on and accessible through this site are made available by Northern Trails Dental Care and/or its suppliers and vendors, and are subject to your agreement to their terms and conditions.

All contents copyright (c) Northern Trails Dental Care

All rights reserved, Northern Trails Dental Care makes this website available to all users for the sole purpose of providing educational information on health-related issues.

The accuracy of website, information, and resources identified are not warranted or guaranteed, or intended to be a substitute for professional health advice, to contradict health advice given, or for health care of any kind.

Your use of this website indicates your agreement to be bound by the Terms of Use and you expressly agree to be bound to the foregoing terms and conditions.

All materials on this website, including the site’s design, layout, and organization, are owned and copyrighted by Northern Trails Dental Care, or its suppliers or vendors, and are protected by U.S. and international copyrights.

Material on this site may be used for personal use only. Commercial use of any sort is strictly prohibited.

Use of Resources & Information
This site may not be used as a supplement or alternative for health care, and is not intended and does not warrant or guarantee the quality or quantity of any services of any of the advertisers identified; further, the information provided is merely for educational purposes, and its accuracy is not guaranteed. Do not use this site as a substitute for health care. Please consult with your doctor or other health care provider regarding any health questions you may have. This site may not be used for health diagnosis or treatment. Do not use this site to disregard any health advice, nor to delay seeking health advice, because of something you read or see in this site.

You understand and agree that neither Northern Trails Dental Care nor its suppliers or vendors or linked domain names are responsible or liable for any claim, loss, or damage of any kind, directly or indirectly resulting from your use of this site or the information or the resources contained on or accessible through it.

Northern Trails Dental Care expressly disclaims any implied warranty or representation about the information or accuracy, relevance, completeness, timeliness or appropriateness for any particular purpose of any kind. Your use of this site is also subject to all additional disclaimers that may appear throughout the site.

Other Internet Sites Links
This site also includes links to other internet sites created and maintained by Northern Trails Dental Care’s suppliers, vendors, affiliates, or subscribers. Be aware that Northern Trails Dental Care does not control, makes no guarantees about, and disclaims any express or implied representations or warranties about the accuracy, relevance, completeness, timeliness or appropriateness for a particular purpose of the information or the resources contained on these or any other internet sites.

Further, the inclusion of these links is merely for your convenience and is not intended and does not reflect Northern Trails Dental Care’s opinion on the accuracy or the importance of these other sites; further, Northern Trails Dental Care does not endorse in any manner any of the views expressed in, or products or services offered by these other sites. All information in any site by Northern Trails Dental Care, or associated or linked site, is extracted, read, used, or relied upon by you at your own risk.

Disclaimer of Warranty
Northern Trails Dental Care and its suppliers and vendors disclaim all express or implied representations or warranties regarding the information, services, products, materials, and any other resources contained on or accessible through this site, including without limitation any implied warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose. All information provided by Northern Trails Dental Care is made available “as is” and “as available” without warranty of any kind, or any express or implied promise, including, by way of example, its continuing availability.

Limitation of Liability
With respect to products, goods, or services purchased from any entity identified, listed, named or contacted through Northern Trails Dental Care’s website, or any links to Northern Trails Dental Care’s website, to the maximum extent permitted by applicable law, in no event shall Northern Trails Dental Care or its suppliers or vendors be liable for any direct, indirect, special, punitive, incidental, exemplary, contractual, or consequential damages, or any damages whatsoever of any kind, resulting from any loss, which by way of example, includes loss of use, loss of data, loss of profits, business interruption, litigation, or any other pecuniary loss, whether based on breach of contract, tort (including negligence), product liability, or otherwise, arising out of or in any way connected with the use or performance of this site, with the delay or inability to use this site, or with the provision of or failure to make available any information, services, products, materials, or other resources contained on or accessible through this site, even if advised of the possibility of such damages.

You acknowledge and agree that the limitations set forth above are elements of this agreement, and that this site would not be provided to you absent such limitations.

Indemnification
You agree to indemnify, defend, and hold harmless Northern Trails Dental Care and its suppliers and vendors from any liability, loss, claim, and expense (including reasonable attorneys’ fees) related to your violation of this agreement or use of this site in any manner. Your use of this site shall constitute your acceptance of the terms of this Agreement, as revised and modified, if any, each time you access this site. Northern Trails Dental Care may modify this agreement at any time, and such modifications shall be effective immediately upon posting of the modified agreement.

Miscellaneous
Northern Trails Dental Care’s failure to insist upon strict enforcement of any provision(s) of this agreement shall not be construed as a waiver of any provision or right.

This agreement and the resolution of any dispute related to this agreement or this site shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of the State of Michigan, without giving effect to any principles or conflicts of law. Any legal action or proceeding between Northern Trails Dental Care or its links, suppliers or vendors and you related to this agreement or this site shall be brought exclusively in a state or federal court of competent jurisdiction sitting in Marquette County, Michigan.

Copyright
All materials on this website, including the site’s design, layout, and organization, are owned and copyrighted by Northern Trails Dental Care or its suppliers or vendors, and are protected by U.S. and international copyrights.

Links
This site contains links to other sites. Northern Trails Dental Care is not responsible for the privacy practices of other sites that are linked to us.

Questions
Should you have any questions or concerns regarding Northern Trails Dental Care’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Use, please contact us.

Search
Search the Website

Use keywords in the search box below to find what you're looking for.

Special Offers
New Patient Specials

Please check back often for New Patient Specials.

Offers apply to new patients only. Must mention these coupons at time of appointment. No cash value. Some restrictions apply. Call for details! *In absence of gum disease or decay.

Schedule Appointment

Go to the Top of the Page
Accessibility
Accessibility Options
Accessibility On Our Website

The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 are recognized and acknowledged as the international standard measure of success. We regularly test our site to ensure we meet or exceed that standard and also consistently look for ways to improve the web site’s performance, speed, and accessibility.

We are committed to continuously improving access to our goods and services by individuals with disabilities. If you are unable to use any aspect of this website because of a disability, please call (906) 661-1026 and we will provide you with prompt personalized assistance.

If you have trouble seeing web pages, the US Social Security Administration offers these tips for optimizing your computer and browser to improve your online experience.

If you are looking for mouse and keyboard alternatives, speech recognition software such as Dragon Naturally Speaking may help you navigate web pages and online services. This software allows the user to move focus around a web page or application screen through voice controls.

If you are deaf or hard of hearing, there are several accessibility features available to you.

Closed Captioning
Closed captioning provides a transcript for the audio track of a video presentation that is synchronized with the video and audio tracks. Captions are generally visually displayed over the video, which benefits people who are deaf and hard of hearing, and anyone who cannot hear the audio due to noisy environments. Most of our website’s video content includes automated captions. Learn how to turn captioning on and off in YouTube.

Volume Controls
Your computer, tablet, or mobile device has volume control features. Each video and audio service has its own additional volume controls. Try adjusting both your device’s volume controls and your media players’ volume controls to optimize your listening experience.

View Accessibility Options