We are excited to share that CHSC missionary, Dr. Warren Cooper, received the 2020 Physician of the Year Award, by MedicalMissions.org. This is an organization that connects medical volunteers with other organizations to sponsor medical missions work around the world. Warren received this award for his service as a missionary surgeon serving in the Democratic Republic of Congo after being nominated by CHSC. Warren deserves this honor because of his deep commitment to seeing God’s light shine in a place that has a dark history.
Dr, Warren, a general surgeon, and his wife Dr. Lindsey Cooper, a pediatrician, serve with CHSC at Nyankunde Evangelical Medical Center in the DR of Congo. Warren is one of 54 trained surgeons for a population of 85 million people. He has been on the mission field nearly all of his life? After growing up as a child of missionaries serving in places such as Vietnam, he decided to attend medical school and train as a surgeon. Since graduation, he has served in over twenty nations, many were active war zones like Sudan and Iraq. When Warren first visited Nyankunde, the community and hospital were still recovering from years of tribal war and the Congolese were valiantly beginning to resurrect the hospital’s services.
The community of Nyankunde and the hospital suffered deep wounds from the war. In September of 2002, a tribal genocide occurred in the community of Nyankunde. Thousands of people were slaughtered, hundreds in and around
the hospital. The missionaries that were serving there then, and many of the staff fled on foot into the jungle. The hospital was completely looted and destroyed and left abandoned for years. After Warren saw the efforts of the Congolese to restore the hospital from the war, he felt called to help them and made a commitment to stay for two years. Those two years are now approaching a decade of service as he has provided compassionate surgical care and training for many Congolese physicians.
Warren and Lindsey met at Nyankunde while Lindsey was part of the Samaritans Purse Post Residency Program. Their son Emmanuel, now 6, was born there. In addition to being the inpatient pediatrician, Lindsey oversees the only inpatient referral center in the region for children with severe acute malnutrition. This program directly saves the lives of more than 200 children each year, that are often admitted to the program in critical condition clinging to life. Many of these children are so weak that they are unable to eat, stand, or walk. With proper care 90% will survive! There loving mothers are housed near the hospital and become part of a support group that is taught gardening and other strategies to improve their resource poor community’s nutrition.
The community of Nyankunde is still plagued by periodic violence and tribal conflict, Ebola outbreaks, and now Covid-19. However, the Cooper’s remain committed to shining the light of God’s love, compassion, and mercy for the Congolese people who live there.
You can learn more about the Cooper’s and the work at Nyankunde here on Medical Missions TV.