Dr. Kendrick Kahler was the first Medical Director of MMC. At that time, we enjoyed free space in the Military Hospital. Eventually Dr. Doug Collins and then Dr.Tim Benadum stepped into the role. In June 2008, MMC’s agreement was terminated because the Ministry of Defense wanted to use the space for profit. In July 2008, we moved to a rented non-medical building as a transitional facility. In that move, valuable surgical and training space was lost and research was begun for a sufficient permanent site.
Possibilities included partnerships with government and
private health care centers, but each posed significant risk to MMC’s vision and mission. We were led to a connection
with the Cambodian National Caucus of the United Methodist Church: a group of UNM churches in both the United States and Cambodia. The Churches in the US are
primarily made up of Cambodian refugees and their families who relocated during the Khmer Rouge in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s.
In 2002 they had purchased land just outside of Phnom Penh. Their vision was to have a medical outreach ministry, and they built a small building, but they were never able to staff the clinic fully. In 2009, the land was donated, absolutely free, to MMC. In
addition to the land donation, Kirk Richter, former builder of the US Embassy in Phnom Penh, among other large international projects, agreed to donate his time managing
the construction of the permanent site for the MMC ministry!
2000: MMC Begins as CSI Clinic with Dr. Kendrick Kahler as the first Medical Director
2006: Leadership is shared by several part time Missionaries
2008: Dr. Doug Collins becomes the Medical Director. As more organizations become involved, the name is changed to Mercy Medical Center. The Clinic relocates to a rented facility.
2009: Dr. Tim Benadum becomes the Medical Director, with Dr. Collins assisting. Mission and Vision are clarified and set forth. Land is donated and plans begin for a permanent site.
2010: Groundbreaking occurs in February.
2011: We move into the first floor of the new center on July 25th
2012-13: Official US Non-profit (501c3) status is obtained. Surgery and Inpatient ward are open.
2014: The new Luka Center (Staff/visitor housing and learning lab) is completed and opened.
2015: MMC receives official status with the Cambodian Government as a Non-Government Organization (NGO). And the eye center is opened.