I think, it may be *whispers* - summer!
I have spent the day in the garden today, not studying when I am meant to be studying. Instead, I discovered that my sewing machine cable would stretch from the outdoor socket to the table! Thus, I ended up accidentally making a top for the Little Miss! Ooops -so my anatomy won't be up to scratch but ye gods I'll be able to do a nice daisy chain stitch for those perinneal repairs ;-))
Anyway, to other things. I needs your help!
I know there are more of you that read this than acknowledge you read it and I am hoping you can spread the word.
An old school friend of mine runs a hospital in Uganda on the edge of the impenetrable rainforest. He has worked incredibly hard, with his partner, building this from a small clinic to a reputable hospital that serves the local community and beyond.
Anyway, I received this letter the other day:
I have to make difficult choices as a doctor in Bwindi. Please allow me to share with you a decision that I have just made.
It costs us a lot of money to run our neonatal unit. We have had to spend on employing nurses and doctors to give 24 hour care to 156 newborn babies in the last year, and every month our numbers increase and babies come from further afield. The neonates are kept in a room heated by power that we generate from a diesel generator during the day and run off batteries at night. We provide the babies with oxygen, all of them get intravenous antibiotics, and they are fed every two hours through a nasal tube. The unit is light and clean, and the mothers stay in an adjacent room where they are able to watch their babies through a glass panel. All of this money is well-spent, because it is often the difference between life and death.
We are fortunate to be able to subsidise health care for most of the children under five in this area through the Child Health Access Program, or CHAP, supported by the Eurochange Charity. But in spite of their generosity this does not cover all of the costs of looking after all children, and we will fall short this year to the tune of about $50,000. This means tough choices, and one decision that we have made is to limit the subsidised care to the people who live nearest to the Hospital – the 60,000 residents of Kayonza and Mpungu. We can still care for other children from other places, but their parents have to pay the cost. This sounds harsh, but my mother always taught me that “money does not grow on trees” and until we discover a money tree in Bwindi we have to make difficult rationing decisions.
The chance of survival for
The nurses caring for the baby have asked me to break the rules and allow
Dr Paul Williams
So, here is where you come in.
I need ideas.
I need something that I can organise that reaches a wider audience than my immediate family and friends that would raise some funds for this current need at Bwindi. I need a big name, or a celebrity face ultimately, or the likes of comic relief to take this on, but that's a pipe dream.
I have some limited skills, none of which would raise much, just some shrapnel. I have friends who have talents, but we all live very spread out and whilst we would and could do something, it will be low key and will raise a small amount I expect.
What this hospital needs is more than just small time donors who can send 50 quid here and there when they've saved up their 2p's (not that I'm belittling the real help that those donors provide!) , I think they need some way of setting up a trust that can supply a constant trickle of funds for this specific purpose.
Anyway, back to reality. In the meantime, I am looking for ideas of things that might draw in a wider audience and raise funds. I'm also looking to spread the word of the wonderful work that Bwindi does for the Batwa population in Uganda. If you think you can help either financially (maybe you can put 50p on one side everytime you read this blog? Maybe you can do a sponsored event or knit baby hats even that I can mail out) or with an idea, please let me know.
Oh and the link again is above!