The free clinic is completely staffed by volunteer medical personnel, who begin each Thursday evening with a prayer of thanks to God for the provision of supplies, and also ask for patience, wisdom and “compassion above all else.”
Though the VIM free clinic is not affiliated with Rhea Medical Center, Franklin highlighted the strong level of support and help offered from the hospital staff.
“It’s been a great alliance,” she said. “Mr. [Ken] Croom, chief executive officer of RMC, has been very supportive, and we’ve even had RMC staff who are volunteering their time and skills.”
According to Franklin, the clinic currently concentrates its energy on helping people with basic healthcare needs and assisting them in getting on the $4 prescription program, but as resources and the number of volunteers grow, they may be able to do more.
“So far we’ve had just enough volunteers every time we’ve met,” Franklin said, adding that additional volunteers are often on call if extra help is needed for an evening.
“We’re constantly trying to train new people to volunteer, but those who have volunteered in the past would tell you how much they’ve been blessed as volunteers,” she laughed. “They’re hooked.”