Go ahead. Ask Don Padgett about his shirt.

donpadgettHe welcomes people’s questions about his clothing choices because it leads to talking about IMA World Health and its work in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

“It starts a whole dialogue,” he said. “Just because I’m wearing a shirt.”

Years ago, Padgett started buying shirts during his trips to the DRC and now he wears them, almost exclusively, everywhere he goes, whether it’s to his church, St. Philip Presbyterian Church in Houston, Texas, or to the grocery store.

Why the Congo? And why IMA?

Padgett and IMA go way back. He was hired as a temporary employee in November of 1992 and he retired more than 15 years later as the Assistant Vice President of Pharmaceutical Services. During his time with IMA, he traveled all over the world. He also made lifelong connections with families in the DRC.

Today, he continues to support IMA World Health and encourages others to support IMA, as well.

“You see the poorest people you can even imagine and you think ‘I’ve got to keep helping them,’” he said.

Padgett is also an affiliate member of Catonsville Presbyterian Church in Maryland where he continues to work with their mission committee on projects that benefit people in DRC and beyond.

He encourages people in the U.S. to help because every little bit counts. “We can’t solve the problems of the poor, but, by golly, we can do what we can do for the poor.”

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(No special shirt required.)