Global Involvement

VOLUNTEERING IN TANZANIA

Helping wounds heal. It’s both a passion and profession for John Muelken, OA-C. As a surgical assistant at Twin Cities Orthopedics, Muelken makes sure patients are stitched up with precision. Healing bodies. And sometimes, much more.

In 2019, Muelken, alongside TCO colleagues Dr. Adam Bakker and Melissa Mendes, joined a group of plastic surgeons from Denver on a volunteer trip to Tanzania. A country where children suffering from burn scars or disfigurations can sometimes be shunned by society.

“Something needed to be done, and the TCO Foundation was generous enough to help us get there,” Muelken said. “No child should live with a treatable disability. These children don’t usually have friends, and sometimes their family is embarrassed by them. If we can help them functionally and cosmetically, it can be a true life-changer.”

Performing multiple burn scar revisions, Muelken and team gave back — by giving these children back their lives.

“We want these children to be accepted,” Muelken said. “I thank the TCO Foundation for giving us the opportunity to provide hope and a much brighter future.”