I first heard about Chiropractic Without Borders (CWB) when I attended the Massage and Chiropractic Conference in Niagara Falls last September. If you know what Doctors Without Borders does, then you’ll have a pretty good idea of what CWB is all about (if you don’t already know).
CWB, based in La Prairie, Que., is made up of volunteer chiropractors and chiropractic students across Canada who travel to developing countries around the world to deliver chiropractic care to poor communities. They educate people on spinal health and support the development of local skills, according to a statement from CWB’s website.
A profession working to effect change in the world while spreading the benefits of chiropractic to people who would not otherwise have the means to experience it is an inspiring endeavour. These are chiropractors who take time away from their practice and source of livelihood to volunteer their time, skills and money to help.
Carol Weiss, a chiropractor and CWB volunteer, shared her own thoughts in an article she wrote for Canadian Chiropractor, after coming back from a mission in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, in 2009: “We had gone to a country where the people have very little understanding of chiropractic, and therefore no biases, and we were able to see first-hand the influence of our treatment.”
The experience, she said, was not just one of clinical (adjusting and treating patients) but also one of friendship and learning and inspiring a whole new world of people with a new appreciation for chiropractic doctors.
Throughout its existence, the chiropractic profession has been working hard to carve its own name in the bigger health-care landscape, and international humanitarian initiatives, like CWB, will only serve to etch that name a little deeper and raise the profile of the profession a little higher. In the best way they know how, the CWB is doing its part in promoting health and wellness to poorer communities around the world.
“Without borders” is an apt phrase in this era of borderless global interaction through web and social media communities, when information about humanitarian efforts is magnified a hundred times by today’s 24-hour news cycle and Twitter generation. This is why international response – whether from established relief organizations or through citizen-initiated efforts – to disaster or emergency situations has accelerated in the last few years.
Social media can be an important tool for CWB to expand its reach, recruit more volunteers, raise more funds and conduct more missions. Many chiropractors are perhaps only starting to scratch the surface when it comes to the potential of social media to promote their business and/or their advocacy.
I would like to see the CWB volunteers succeed in their objectives, and become ambassadors for global health.
If you would like to know more about Chiropractic Without Borders, visit the group’s website: www.chiropratiquesansfrontieres.ca.
From the Editor: December 2013
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