It’s raining in Ghana but despite that the work on Ankumadua Clinic is continuing and the building is now up to lintel level. When it’s finished, we’ll hand it over to the District to run. They’re very happy about it, as it will provide health care for people who’ve previously had none – we’ve been told horrible stories about sick people being driven on the back of a motor bike for miles to the nearest clinic and dropping dead when they got there
Last week, a six day eye clinic took place in Gyetiase, run by a team from Okonfo Anokye Teaching Hospital in Kumasi, and led by Dr Peter Osei-Bonsu. The team consisted of four ophthalmologist, six optometrists, five ophthalmic nurses, two technicians and one driver. They were joined by Ashanti Development’s Agnes Oppong and some supporting staffs.
In all, 1,123 people were seen, 103 cataract surgeries were performed and over 1600 spectacles dispensed. Dave Banks, Ashanti Development’s teacher trainer who happened to be in Gyetiase, comments that the clinic was ‘absolutely amazing. It was very busy all week and very well organised by Nicholas.” he says.
“The guys from Kumasi along with Agnes and a whole group of supporting staff worked so hard and the atmosphere was so positive,” adds Dave. Kay (his wife) spent the week dispensing glasses and I was able to help out on a couple of days – we both agreed it had been a privilege to part of it all. Needless to say the people being given spectacles, eye care and operations were so happy and grateful. Wow, what a week,” he says.
Best of all, the hospital team are promising to come back next year.
We had a great concert here in Central London on Tuesday, with performers including Jonathan Reid and Henry Roche (both pianists); Simon Wall and Nan Atichatpong (tenors) and Elizabeth Weisberg (soprano); and Mary Mundy on the cello. Music included work by Schumann, Beethoven, Quilter and Chopin.
It was a lovely evening, in a beautiful church (St Pancras New Church) full of friends and supporters. What could be better! Here’s a picture of Henry introducing some music.
Thank you so much to everyone who took part in Saturday’s sponsored swim. The total raised is over £1,000 and still going up.
Thank you particularly to Young Chelsea Bridge Club supporters, including Rob Cliffe, Chris Duckworth, Sarah and David Ewart, Chantal Girardin, Gordon Rainsford, Terry Hewett, Dick Jordan, Mahmoud Sadek, Kath Stynes, David Muller, Maxin Etkin, Paul Lamford, Margaret and Martin Nygren. They raised over a hundred fifty pounds sponsoring Mike and Carrie Eden’s swimathon.
And thank you most of all to the amazing Sybil Bell, who dreamed up and organised the whole thing, and then spent hours baking cakes for the swimmers. We owe her a big debt for her kindness and energy and hope she’ll come to Ghana soon and see what happened to the money she raised.
The beneficiaries will be the village of Dome, in the Ashanti Region. Materials will be bought to enable every householder to construct a household latrine, and Ashanti Development will show them how to do it. They will also be taught health and hygiene. The result will be a much healthier community, with baby deaths cut from three in ten to around about zero.
Work started recently on our third clinic, to be built at the crossroads at Ankamadua. Everyone is enthusiastic about it and work is progressing quickly. The site has been cleared, sand and stones delivered and the villagers are now making the blocks. When that is completed, building work can continue even during the raining season.