2005 - Crystal Tirrell

Crystal Tirrell

CRYSTAL TIRRELL grew-up in Castor, Alberta, and attended Gus Wetter School for the first 11 years of her education. After completing high school at Prairie Bible Institute (Three Hills), from which she graduated with Excellence, she enrolled in the North American Baptist College where she achieved a one year Certificate in Biblical Studies. It was then that she began her life's mission to extend her caring and support to the less fortunate of our world.

Crystal enrolled in the Nursing Faculty at the University of Alberta from which she graduated with Honors in the Spring of 2000. During her studies, she volunteered at the Mustard Seed Street Church, chose the Herb Jamieson Men's Shelter as the work site for the clinical studies portion of her program and, for summer employment, worked for the Hope Mission as camp nurse for the inner city children's camps. These choices were made as a direct result of a sincere desire to make a difference to those most in need around her.

Following graduation, Crystal worked as a nurse for the University of Alberta Hospital. In March, 2001, she enrolled in a Critical Care program and subsequently took a position as an ICU nurse in the Misericordia Hospital to gain experience in emergency procedures critical to her goal of future humanitarian work.

In November, 2001, Crystal's humanitarian work began when she left her job and headed to Manila, Philippines, to be in charge of the Shalom Birthing Clinic operated by ACTION International Ministries. During her time here, Crystal delivered babies (up to 70 infants per week), as well as providing necessary pre- and post-natal care for the mothers and their children. Whilst there, Crystal was successful in training Filipino ladies to operate the clinic. The clinic continues to be extremely busy and is the only birthing clinic in a vast area of predominantly very poor people.

Crystal returned to the ICU at the Misericordia to save money and make arrangements for her next mission-the opening of a medical clinic just outside Manila. In 2004, this dream was realized when the clinic opened its doors and it is here that Crystal continues to minister to the medical needs of the poor. As part of this effort, she has been able to make connections so that some of the most seriously ill are taken to a hospital some distance away. Although these people have no money to pay, Crystal's volunteer work has made it possible for them to receive the medical assistance and supplies they so badly need.

In December, 2004, Crystal married a Filipino. She and her husband live just outside Manila where Crystal plans to continue her humanitarian work following the birth of their first child in the near future.