At 27 years old and the oldest of nine children, Salomao is fluent in four languages, is a trained carpenter, is a leader in his church, and most notably works as a dental technician in the rural villages of southern Mozambique.
Salomao has always been generous with this talents and resources, but he found a new skill to share when American Pearl Burns arrived in rural Mozambique in 2014. Pearl is a dentist working with I-Dent, an organization that brings dental clinics to the most rural and inaccessible regions in the world. Pearl arrived in Mozambique with two collapsible dental chairs and a collection of tools, ready to equip locals to help meet their own peoples' needs. Salomao and 5 other Mozambiquans went through the 5 week training, and he now travels with the Mercy Air helicopter to bring dental relief to the people in these small villages.
For many of the patients that come to Salomao for help, the pain from their toothache is nearly unbearable. They often struggle to open and close their mouths and eating is even more painful. Even though he is currently only able to pull teeth, when Salomao treats them, relief comes immediately.
Salomao takes great pride in his work and is eager to help his people. He sees every patient as a unique individual and treats each one with compassion and gentleness. Salomao’s long days consist of traveling with the Mercy Air helicopter from village to village, working in dimly lit, often stiflingly hot rooms from early morning to evening. Even after these long hours, his work is not finished as he must still take care of the equipment, sterilize the dental tools for the next day, and work to comply with all of the Ministry of Healthcare requirements. It takes significant time and commitment to do what Salomao does, but he does it with excellence.
When asked who pays him for this work, Salomao pointed toward the sky and stated emphatically, "God will pay me someday." Then he turned and walked back to the house where his patients were waiting for him. It is an honor for us at Mercy Air to partner with individuals like Salomao.