UVU Woodbury School of Business Honors Dr. William Jackson for Humanitarian Work

University Marketing & Communications: Layton Shumway | 801-863-6863 | LShumway@uvu.edu

Written by: Barbara Christiansen

Half a million humanitarian major surgeries and five million medical screenings have earned Dr. William Jackson the Stephen & Bette Gibson Social Entrepreneur Award from the Utah Valley University Woodbury School of Business.

The honor is modeled after the mission of the Gibson’s Academy for Creating Enterprise, a non-profit organization started in 1999 that seeks to alleviate poverty by teaching students all over the world how to start and grow their own small businesses.

Jackson and his wife, Audrey, were asked to serve a three-year assignment in the Philippines. It meant selling his medical practice, receiving no pay, and taking their son, now 12 years old, with them.

Jackson had years of third-world humanitarian assistance experience, and he organized a Filipino team of doctors and hospitals to volunteer and/or donate their services. He chose specific surgeries — club feet, crossed eyes, cleft lips and pallets. At the end of the three years, he had been responsible for 30 patients receiving the surgeries each month. Deseret International Foundation was formed; it is now known as Charity Vision International.

Today the group provides an average of 300 surgeries per month in the Philippines alone, with an additional 4,000 from 24 other nations now involved with Jackson.

“He’s worked with other doctors and professionals to take this program into other parts of the world he can’t,” said UVU President Matthew S. Holland. “That’s what we believe in here at UVU — to use the power of education and resources to replicate our influence on a national and international basis.”

Jackson said the credit belongs to the hundreds of professionals around the world, but he has personally funded the worldwide travel, support for emails, shipping, phone calls, packing, worldwide customs and the other work required to make the charity run smoothly.

The doctors still do everything free of charge, however, as the number of surgeries has grown, Charity Vision has needed to purchase equipment and supplies and the hospitals require reimbursement. In 2015, the group performed more than 50,000 operations at an average cost of $25.

More information on Charity International is available at http://deseretinternational.blogspot.com. For the UVU Entrepreneurship Institute, visit http://www.uvu.edu/entrepreneurship.

Fourth region (Section 1)