This week is the one-year anniversary of Greg Radicone embarking on a new role as the Central American Program Manager for GHF in Quiché, Guatemala. He has done a tremendous job integrating some new team members and increasing the outreach capacity of our local mobile clinic there. Under Greg’s watch, our weekly mobile clinic team has provided integrated healthcare services to more than five thousand patients in underserved communities! Greg is a true champion of compassion and that shines through in each of his treatments. Thanks Greg for all your GREAT work! Read all about Greg’s story with Global Healthworks Foundation below.
Greg Radicone’s Gratitude for Guatemala and His Global Healthworks Foundation Team
When Greg Radicone decided to become an acupuncturist, the stars seemed to align and “everything just fell into place.” “I was ready for a career change,” Greg says. “I sat down and wrote out everything I was interested in. Chinese medicine kept popping into my head.” Greg applied to New York’s Pacific College of Oriental Medicine (PCOM) and was accepted just one week later.
Now the Central American Program Manager for Global Healthworks Foundation (GHF) in Quiché, Guatemala, the thirty-one-year-old is living out another one of his “dreams”: to work abroad, providing underserved communities with free access to acupuncture and herbal medicine. “This is what I always wanted to do,” Greg explains. “I don’t know if I expected it to happen as quickly as it did. This entire journey with acupuncture has taught me to live each day truthfully and gratefully.”
Greg radiates gratitude, approaching each individual, regardless of age or background, with seemingly limitless compassion. Combined with his sincerity and patience, that compassion leaves each patient feeling as if she/he is the most important person in the room. His treatments are professional and individualized, yet warm and loving. “If you watch Greg in the treatment room, he’s almost always smiling and laughing,” says Dan Wunderlich, GHF Founder and Executive Director. “And the people he’s treating—children, elders, or those his own age—laugh right along with him! His smile is infectious. Beyond his sense of humor, Greg is incredibly personable, approachable, and committed. He’s a true champion of compassion and that shines through in each of his treatments.”
Greg is GHF’s second full-time acupuncturist in Guatemala. Fellow PCOM graduate Peter Caron worked as the local program manager for two years before returning to the United States in 2015. “I knew Peter was thinking about transitioning,” Greg says. “I expressed my interest in taking over for him. I thought, ‘What do I have to lose?’ Peter introduced me to Dan, and I began working for Global Healthworks Foundation in April of 2015. Now, here I am, a year later, fully settled in and absolutely loving it. I don’t ever want to leave!”
In addition to his love for the location and patients, Greg’s team, he says, is what “gets him up in the morning.” The group of five—Greg and four Quiché residents who work as health promoters and support staff—hold mobile clinics three to four days a week throughout the region. “We’re providing a setting where we’re treating some one hundred and fifty patients a week—a setting in which people can come heal and receive support,” Greg explains. “But to me, the connection with the communities is the most important part of what we’re doing. Our Guatemalan team takes the information they learn back to their communities to educate others and help heal even more people. That’s the way Dan set it up, and it’s working very well.”
Greg radiates gratitude, approaching each individual, regardless of age or background, with seemingly limitless compassion.
According to Eva Carrillo, fellow clinic staff member, another reason “it’s working” is Greg’s leadership style: He treats the clinic team as family and has a way of making all those in his presence feel extremely comfortable, as if they have known each other for years. “Greg, Gregcito, Gregorio, Goyo—son los nombres que le decimos (Greg, Gregcito, Gregorio, Goyo—they are the names that we call him),” Eva says. “Más que nuestro jefe y un doctor, es nuestro amigo, y es un amigo de todos. Bromea mucho con los pacientes y con nosotros. (More than our boss and a doctor, he is our friend, and is a friend to everyone. He jokes a lot with the patients and with us.)” Greg’s positive outlook and jovial nature, Eva adds, are contagious and make the clinic environment more enjoyable for both patients and staff. “En cada comunidad, dice ‘Este lugar es mi favorito’ (In each community, he says, ‘This place is my favorite’),” Eva says. “Yo llegué a la conclusión que todos los lugares son sus favoritos. (I came to the conclusion that all the places are his favorites.)”
When he speaks of his “favorite places” or team members like Eva, Greg stresses that the entire operation is a group effort and bigger than just “one acupuncturist from the United States.” “We [the acupuncturists] aren’t ‘saviors’ coming down to help people. Sure, we have the skills and tools, and we’re doing important work. But the local Guatemalans are the impressive ones. They are the ones ensuring this information continues to be transmitted.”
That sense of humility is what makes Greg’s work so transformative. Each treatment comes from a place of love—love for acupuncture, love for his team, and love for Guatemala.