Here are some testimonies of recent Brazil volunteer mission participants and team leaders, that have honored us with their visit, their great work and most importantly, with their friendship:

01. Dr. Charles Horton, MD
President and Founder
Physicians for Peace
Norfolk, VA

Dear Paulo Seidl:

On behalf of the Medical Team, the Board and staff of Physicians For Peace, I want to thank you for this tremendous opportunity to practice our skills and share the joy of medicine with our friends in Brazil. Yesterday, Team Leader Dr. Juan Montero gave a glowing report about the hospitality and coordination of arrangements extended by FUNDAMED. The team’s formal and informal lectures fostered PFP’s vision; that through teaching and learning we are all enriched. We trust our host physicians will utilize their upgraded skill level for their daily patient care, and hope they feel the PFP-FUNDAMED mission was as successful as we do.

It was a great honor for Physicians For Peace to launch the first team of specialists into Brazil, to learn and to teach and to make new friends in this fascinating part of the world. The support from FUNDAMED and your personal presence during the mission were invaluable. You are a true civilian ambassador of your country.

We can all take pride in the accomplishments and friendships which were made, and know that our efforts helped to further the cause of world peace and international goodwill by providing medical education and patient care to those in need. Once again, Paulo, thank you for your tremendous efforts.

02. Mr. Stan Brock
President and Founder
Remote Area Medical TEAMS
Tennessee, USA

Dear Paulo Seidl:

I have had a lengthy discussion with David Chacko about the mission and he is sending me his report and the medical history forms. He was extremely pleased with the expedition and very happy with the way you organized things so efficiently.

The 51 surgeries that were completed may not seem like a large number but each one was done very carefully and David tells me that the post-operative results looked very good. Clearly this was a very good operation and very well hosted by you and your colleagues. We all look forward to working with you on more projects like this in the future. Thanks for a great job.

03. Dr. Jack Demos, MD
President and Founder
Pittsburgh, PA

Surgicorps Int’l is a Pittsburgh, PA, based charitable volunteer organization formed in 1994 to improve the delivery of health care throughout the world. Since its inception, this organization has traveled to countries the world over supplying much needed medical and surgical care to individuals without the resources to otherwise obtain this care. Three of our trips have been to Brazil, these trips beautifully orchestrated and coordinated by Paulo Seidl and FUNDAMED.

Cooperative efforts between these American and Brazilian organizations have resulted in surgical correction of significant congenital, traumatic, and developmental deformities in over two hundred individuals. FUNDAMED has been instrumental in the care of these unfortunate indigent individuals, and obviously has tremendously expedited our overseas work. We look forward to a long-lasting continued mutually beneficial relationship between our groups as we strive to share resources and expertise in the treatment of those in need throughout Brazil.

04. Dr. David Howard, DDS
Team Leader
Dental and Medical Mission
Utah, USA

FUNDAMED is an organization set up to improve the health standards of impoverished communities in northern Brazil. Typically FUNDAMED will work with community leaders to organize humanitarian medical and dental expeditions to provide treatment otherwise not available to the respective community residents. In other efforts FUNDAMED will help the community establish a well and sewage system if an acceptable source does not exist.

As a dentist in participation with FUNDAMED I have found the program to be very well organized. It is the participants responsibility to arrive in Brazil. However, once in Brazil there is little if any detail for the participating dentist or physician to worry about. The travel to the area of service, as well as, the food and accommodations while in the area of service are provided for. In preparation for the humanitarian service FUNDAMED works with the leaders of the community, and an organized plan is ready by the time the participants arrive. Therefore, the benefit of service is optimized, and many recipients are enriched.

05. Dr. James Norris, MD
President and Founder
New York, NY

Last year I made two trips to Brazil for mission work. Our teams worked in Hospital São Lucas located in Juazeiro do Norte, a small town in the northeast state of Ceara. My trip was sponsored by my company, JAMTAK INTERNATIONAL INC.; SMALL WORLD FOUNDATION out of Dallas, Texas; and FUNDAMED in BRAZIL. FUNDAMED coordinated all of our travel from Fortaleza to Juazeiro do Norte, made all arrangements for our accommodations, provided translators and any assistance we needed during our stay.

FUNDAMED’S flawless preparations and unwavering support were instrumental in making these missions highly successful. Additionally, we were given warm receptions by the Mayor and his staff. Hospital São Lucas is an efficient, spotlessly clean facility with a capable cooperative staff. It is fortunate to have a dedicated and superb chief of Surgery and our plastic surgery colleague was equally proficient and cooperative. FUNDAMED through its unexcelled coordination of efforts of all involved ably demonstrates what can be achieved through an international cooperative effort.

06. Dr. Terry Norris, DDS
Team Leader
Northern Arizona Dental Team
Flagstaff, AZ

Dear Paulo Seidl:

I have had the opportunity to travel to Brazil on three separate occasions under the auspices of Fundamed. On each trip, we have been treated very well. We usually stay in the finest hotels available, and are treated royally. Transportation is provided, and the opportunity to serve is abundant. The need in Brazil for your services is so great that you will be wanted for years to come. The people are so grateful for your service to them because, otherwise, they would have to suffer for a much longer time.

The first time I went, my time and finances were high on the list of priorities, but after the first trip, they were at the bottom of the list. I just wanted to get back and help as many people as I could and the cost became insignificant. While you may encounter clinical conditions that are not perfect, you will find that you can work around the problems and the people are most helpful and supportive. If you decide to come to Brazil, you will have an experience you will never forget! Boa Viagem!

07. Dr. James Palleschi, MD
Team Leader
International Volunteers in Urology, Inc.
Georgia, USA

In late November of 1999 I travelled to Juazeiro do Norte representing the International Volunteers in Urology. My goal was to begin the process of bringing contemporary urological care to the people of this area. The experience was one of the most gratifying of my life. The people of this area have so little, but are so appreciative and warm.

All of the people at Sao Lucas hospital, including the nurses, physicians, and entire support staff were wonderful. Of course none of this would have been possible had it not been for Fundamed, which coordinated everything for us. Our accommodations were exceptionally good, transportation was always available, and translators were provided (their services were crucial to the success of our mission). It would be my hope that American physicians can continue to work with Fundamed for the benefit of the deserving people of Brazil. The need is very great.

08. Pastor Mario Ceballos
Chaplain and Team Leader
SHARES/Florida Hospital
Orlando, FL

I was the chaplain on a Medical Mission trip from the US to Brazil. I have been to several mission trips to Venezuela, Brazil, Mexico and the Dominican Republic and this was the best ever. FUNDAMED did a fantastic job in securing accommodations, hospital and permits, for our physicians and nurses to deliver free medical care to people that were in desperate need of medical attention and this was the only way for them to get it. Paulo Seidl was very professional and provided what he said he would. I am planning another mission trip to Brazil
hosted by Paulo Seidl and FUNDAMED.

09. Dr. Kelly Reber
President and Founder
Northern Arizona Volunteer Medical and Surgical
Flagstaff, AZ

My name is Dr Kelly Reber and I represent the Northern Arizona Volunteer Medical and Surgical Corp. For the past several years we have worked closely with FUNDAMED in providing health care to the poor in northern Brazil. As many of you know there is a great deal of red tape and preparation that goes into a medical trip to a country like Brazil. Without the help of FUNDAMED it would be impossible for us to get into the country. More importantly it is nice to know that when we arrive all of the details will be taken care of. Paulo Seidl has been excellent to work with and has so many connections to get the job done. Our team has traveled to many different countries and FUNDAMED has been our best connection in getting into the country and providing health care with the least amount of hassle.

10. Mrs. Patricia Williams
Mercy International Health Services
Michigan, USA

Fundamed has proven to be a gracious and helpful host for Mercy International Health Services medical teams conducting surgical missions in Brazil. They have identified populations with high levels of need and few resources to ensure that we are serving the neediest. They have facilitated the local logistical aspects of our missions, allowing our teams to maximize their time on site and put forth their best efforts. Fundamed’s commitment to bringing people with need together with available medical resources is commendable.

11. Dr. Yale Solomon, MD
President and Founder
Volunteer Eye Surgeons International
New York, NY

As president of Volunteer Eye Surgeons International, I have become aware of the great effort being made by Fundamed to alleviate the burden of illness and disease among the very poor in underdeveloped areas in Brazil. We have worked with Paulo Seidl, Fundamed’s very energetic director, to provide eye surgeons who perform sight saving operations under his guidance. The need is great and Fundamed is working to help.

12. Dr. William Belmond, MD
Team Leader
Florida Eye Surgeons
Sarasota, FL

Fundamed performs a great service by sponsoring highly qualified and experienced surgeons from the United States to perform cataract and other types of eye surgery in the poverty stricken areas of North Eastern Brazil.

13. Mrs. Iris Brandl-Grau
Overseas Trip Coordinator
Weiterstadt, Germany

Since 05 years we successfully have sent German dentists and doctors to FUNDAMED to treat the needy in Brazil for free. We have had a good feedback from the dentists and doctors and also from Mr. Paolo Seidl who has organized these projects.

14. Dr. Keith Reber
Team Leader
Northern Arizona Medical Mission
Utah, USA

Dear Paulo Seidl:

It has been a few weeks since we returned from our trip to Fortaleza. I wanted to write and thank you for the great trip. In my opinion, it could not have been a better trip. The accommodations were excellent. The hotel was very nice and the food was excellent. We very much enjoyed being part of the Fortal. It added much to the enjoyment of the trip. You Brazilians sure do know how to party.

The hospital personnel were great. We appreciated their preparation in have children already selected for us to operate on. It allowed us to spend more time doing surgery. The operation room nurses were the greatest. We so much appreciated their help and their willingness to work the extra hours with us. Please let them know how much we enjoyed working with them. We were very, very pleased with the anesthesiologists that were provided for us. They were excellent and very accommodating. It added to our experience to work with them. Please let those responsible for them know how much we appreciated working with them.

Finally, it was a great trip and we feel good about what we were able to accomplish. Thank you again for all your help in putting this trip together. There is so much involved in making this all happen in the right way. This was a wonderful trip for us.

15. Dr. Ginger Holt, MD and Janie Patterson, RN
Team Leaders
Healing the Children/Vanderbilt University
Nashville, TN

One doesn’t have to understand Portuguese to translate the pleading eyes of
a child or the face of a parent who so desperately seeks care for his child.
“Can you help me? Please can you help my child?” The desire to obtain the
best care for our children and families transcends all language and cultural
barriers. This is the recurrent message of our Healing the Children Missions and FUNDAMED.

Teamwork abounds with our mission trips. Not only among our diverse
American team, consisting of old colleagues from various cities, but between
new colleagues with vastly different training and perspectives. Each
mission becomes an attempt at cultural and medical exchange which meld into
one sucessful mission. In the past 8 years, we have provided free surgical care
to over 500 children. We are proud to add another 50 children or so from Brazil
to this total.

I have heard it is an old sea captain’s tale that saltwater heals wounds
quickly and soothes a weathered soul. This makes the beautiful seaside city
of Natal a wonderful place to heal small children and breathe new life into
them. Speaking for each team member, we were rejuvenated by the glorious
atmosphere, open reception, and warm hospitality we received from FUNDAMED
and from the local people in Natal.

16. Dr. Mario Ochoa
Vice President
Washington, DC

Dear Paulo Seidl:

I do encourage you to work with them. FUNDAMED is a young agency with an
excellent work on behalf of the needy in Brazil, and I believe that, with your
association, it will only strengthen their capacity even further.
Please let me now if you need some assistance in your endeavor, as we stand
ready to help you and FUNDAMED as it has been done in the past.

17. Dr. Mark H. Weinstein, MD
Team Leader and Assistant Clinical Professor of Plastic Surgery
Healing the Children/Yale University – School of Medicine
New Haven, CT

I wish to express some of my thoughts on a recent Medical Mission to Northeastern Brazil. I am on the clinical faculty of the Yale University School of Medicine in the Department of Plastic Surgery. In November of 2000 I led a team of physicians and nurses from Yale in New Haven, Connecticut, USA to Mossoro, RN for the purpose of operating on people with congenital cleft lips and palates, burn scars, and other plastic surgical deformities. We brought all of our instruments, supplies, sutures, Operating room nurses, anesthesiologists, recovery room nurses,
pediatrician, and Plastic surgeons. Using two operating rooms for six days, we accomplished our mission with great success, operating on almost 60 individuals.

I want to express my thanks and deepest gratitude to the people of Mossoro, to the Mayor and Minister of Health of Mossoro, and to the physicians, nurses, end employees of Santa Lucia Hospital, all of whom were gracious, and extremely helpful to us.

Most of all, I would like to express my thanks to Fundamed, without whom the entire mission would not be possible. Fundamed, led by Paulo Seidl, helped us tremendously. We were able to easily obtain our visas, we were met at the airport in Fortaleza, where customs was already prepared for our arrival. Our accommodations and transportation in Brazil, arranged by Fundamed were superb. With the help of Fundamed and the hospital personnel, all the patients were waiting for us, and the screening process to determine the operative procedures went smoothly. Each day in the operating room was a pleasure. We were provided with excellent interpreters, and we even had the opportunity to teach some student nurses. I also wish to thank Fundamed for arranging activities outside the hospital, so that we might better understand and enjoy the culture of Northeastern Brazil. I was also impressed with the fine relationship Fundamed has with the local government and with the local press.

Of course the greatest testimonial to Fundamed is the wonderful work they do to provide healthcare, clothing and medicine to the poor people of Brazil, who would otherwise never receive such care. This type of activity is forever to be respected, commended and praised.

18. Dr. Frederick E. Pratt, MD
Team Leader and Visiting Professor of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery
Healing the Children/University of California – School of Medicine
Davis, CA

Dear Paulo,

It was a pleasure to meet you in Campo Maior with your father and it was
especially kind of you to greet us at midnight on our return in Fortaleza.

Fundamed did a great job in caring for our needs and ultimately in searching
out patients. There is no doubt that Fundamed and more particularly, Mr. Haroldo Seidl,
enabled the entire Campo Maior project and experience to occur.

That being recognized and acknowledged it is also abundantly evident that the
entire community actively participated in facilitating the mission.  For
example, providing a hotel to live in, a hospital to work at and of course
the vehicles and drivers to transport us when necessary.

But there was much more, because we celebrated and visited points of interest
and friends on weekends; courtesy of people in Campo Maior and friends of

It has been my experience, that world wide, large numbers of people continue
to go unattended, so it comes as no surprise to find these same kind of
people, young and old,  in Campo Maior.  Needless to
say, we were very glad to be able to surgically treat a few of these people
(50) during our visit.

I hope your work continues to go well.

19. Ms.Connie Davis
International Team Coordinator
Northwest Medical Teams International
Portland, OR

Dear Paulo and Haroldo!

Greetings from Portland! I know it’s been a while since I have contacted you, but I just wanted to take this opportunity to thank you for your partnership with Northwest Medical Teams for the General Surgery team in June 2001.

I have read the team’s trip report, seen the pictures, and have heard stories passed to me by Brenda and everything sounds so positive! Thank you for all the hard work you and FUNDAMED did for this team. Thank you for the first successful partnership between Northwest Medical Teams and FUNDAMED. I know this team is almost 8 years in the making, but I am so thankful that God assembled the right group of people to inaugurate this partnership. We couldn’t have hand picked a better team from New York to represent us. They all have hearts of gold (as you have seen from working alongside them!).  I am particularly impressed by the story how the team was able to save the life of the 17 year old and her baby. This is definitely a story of God’s planning.

I just want to personally thank FUNDAMED for their hard work with this team. This team to Brazil would not have been possible had it not been for Paulo, Haroldo, and the dedicated staff of FUNDAMED. Our expectations have been exceeded and we thank you for that.

We look forward to more successful partnerships between NWMTI and FUNDAMED. Thank you again for your commitment to service to those in Brazil. And remember, if you are in America, our invitation for a couple of days in the beautiful Pacific Northwest is still open. Many thanks!

20. Dr. Allam Medhat, MD
Team Leader and General Surgeon
Columbia University Hospital
New York, NY

Fundamed proved to be a very organized operation that brings medical help to
deprived areas in Brazil.  I remember the importance of organization, prior to the trip, and needed to contact them for days at a time.  After working with
them I can understand why.   Cellular telephones in Brazil do not work
outside of their home areas and those guys are on the road most of the time
to arrange for different missions.  Mr. Paulo Seidl awaited us in Fortaleza
patiently at 1:00 AM after 8 hours delay.  He helped us clear customs and
obtain all needed signatures for our equipment release.  I would like through
Northwest Medical Teams to express the team’s gratitude and thanks to
Fundamed and both Mr. Paulo and Mr. Harold Seidl.  We strongly recommend them
for future work with your organization.  We certainly look forward to work
with Fundamed again in the future.
21. Dr George Birenbaum, MD
Team Leader and Ophthalmology Surgeon/Professor
Volunteer Eye Surgeons International
Albuquerque, NM

To Whom It May Concern:

I have worked with Fundamed in Brazil in the State of Piauí, in the communities of União, Miguel Alves, and Valença.  The hard work and coordination of all Fundamed staff members was paramount in making the project a success.  Fundamed raises funds, coordinates human resources and removes obstacles so that the delivery of health care to the poor can be accomplished  with minimal inconvenience to the volunteers.  In my stay of three weeks I was able to complete over 100 cases of ocular surgeries and a larger number of cases of excision of benign tumors and miscellaneous skin lesions.

22. Dr. Alfred Schneider, MD
Team Coordinator and General Surgeon
Mercy Hospital/Michigan
Michigan, USA

Hi Paulo and Harold:

I want to thank you both for a wonderful time in Brazil.  After getting married and having children it was the next best thing I have ever done.  I want to give a special thanks to Harold because you had to put up with all of us for the whole two weeks.  You are truly the Wizard of Brazil and working in Brazil would never have been the same without you.  I have been over my pictures almost every day and the stories get repeated every day.  I never get tired of telling about the great time we had.  I am truly looking forward to the next mission.  If you send me your address I will send some pictures.   I have been to the local market asking to purchase cashew fruit and fruit of the Conde but no one knows anything about it.  Thank you again for all that you have done for us and thank you for the great job you are doing for the people of Brazil. I will be talking to you.

23. Mrs. Marian Ouellette
Program Director
Mercy International Health Services
Michigan, USA

Dear Paulo:

A resounding part on the back to you and all team members for your efforts in Brazil!
The team arrived home safely…  They all had a wonderful experience and have great memories.  We are going to get together with the team when they settle down a little for a debriefing.
Thank you for all you did to make our mission a great success!
Thanks again.

24. Dr. Dieter Hoffmann, MD
Team Leader and ENT Surgeon
Northwest Medical Teams International
Portland, OR

Dear Paulo,

We arrived home without problem. Thank you again for facilitating our mission. In general, I had a very positive and gratifying experience. The trip was well organized and the facilities surpassed all of our expectations. We hope our team lived up to the Brazilian needs as well. The patient load was manageable but I was surprised by the number of new patients that kept coming each day.  The staff at Unimed was very supportive and our team owes them much appreciation.

I believe the entire team would be interested in returning to Sobral in the future. As I mentioned I would like to return if my family and work life allows. Have a great trip to the US. Best Wishes, Dieter.

25. Dr. Ivo Pitanguy, MD
President and Plastic Surgeon
The Ivo Pitanguy Clinic
Rio de Janeiro, RJ

Dr. Charles:

It was a pleasure to have my service collaborated on the first mission that Physicians for Peace/FUNDAMED has organized in Brazil. I have just spoken with Dr. Marcelo Siqueira, one of my assistants, who recently returned from his stay with your team, in Mossoró. He informed me of the various surgical procedures and the fruitful scientific exchange, and seemed very enthusiastic about the whole mission.

I feel that the greatest legacy we can leave is a new generation of plastic surgeons, that will carry on our work in its philosophical, humanitarian and technical aspects. In fact, in September, on the occasion of the 13th Scientific Meeting of my Alumni Association, we will be celebrating the 40 years since our Service has been founded. It therefore seems natural to me that we contribute in partnership with colleagues that share the same higher goals.

I wish your organization continuing success and hope to hear from you soon.

Todd Cockrell
Team Leader
NOVA University – School of Dentistry
Fort Lauderdale, FL

“Glad to hear we didn’t out do our welcome while we were there. Your really made everything an unforgettable experience none of us will forget.”

Bob Biggs
Team Coordinator
Volunteer for Peace Mission
Vermont, USA

The outstanding thing Fundamed has going for them, which is always the most difficult to establish, is they have an exceptional infrastructure in place to continue providing aid to this community as well as others. It would appear the local governing bodies are completely behind this organization as well as all those they provide aid-i.e., schools, etc. and the people like Paulo, Junior and Pollyanna.

David Wang
Team Coordinator
McMaster University Pre-Med Students Volunteer Team
Ontario, Canada

It sounds like you are very busy with your family’s business and FUNDAMED. I wish you the best of luck with both endeavors. Even in socialist nations, the welfare of the less fortunate is often greatly dependent upon the generosity of their fellow citizens and whether those citizens have a strong sense of social responsibility. By working to instill that sense of responsibility in the young professionals of Brazil you are doing something that is wonderful and perhaps even revolutionary. I can honestly say that through interacting with you, your colleagues and through researching FUNDAMED, I’ve learned that ideas can have tremendous power.