As Christmas approaches, Salem Free Clinics is continuing to serve a much-needed demand for medical care in the Salem, Ore. area.
Throughout October, nearly 500 patients were seen and treated for medical and dental needs. More than 160 of these patients received mental health care through SFC’s partnership with Corban University.
“What I find to be even more encouraging is that 25 patients came to know Jesus Christ as a result of the clinic in the month of October and more than 120 for the year,” said Corban Provost Matt Lucas, D.A. “It is good to be reminded that the gospel is the hope for our world and that we get to play a part in sharing it with others.”
Salem Free Clinics was started in 2009 in partnership with Salem Alliance Church. There are currently four locations including the main clinic on Broadway Street NE, Portland Road NE and Trinity Covenant Church, all in Salem, Ore. Patients are also seen through the Polk Community Free Clinic in Dallas, Ore.
The ministry started by meeting the needs of residents in the Edgewater neighborhood of West Salem.
“We adopted about four city blocks and knocked on doors each week asking what we could do to help,” said Clinic Director Todd Gould. “At first it was just providing clothes, diapers, etc. As we built relationships with those in the community, the needs shifted to health care.”
The original goal was to see 10,000 patients by 2015, but Gould said the medical ministry would likely exceed that number this coming year.
“It’s the church meeting the needs of the poor, free of charge,” Lucas said. “That’s what grace is about…free and no condemnation. It makes us a better community when people who live in the community are healthy.”
For more information about Salem Free Clinics visit www.salemfreeclinics.org.
Hilltop News Managing Editor Sarah Moreau contributed to this story.