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Fundraising for Health Clinic Staff Houses

February 21, 2017 2 comments

Edirisa UK is very excited to announce our new partnership with the Faculty of Architecture at the University of Ljubjlana, Slovenia!

danaja

Danaja Vastic from the University of Ljubjlana

We are raising funds for staff housing at the clinic on Bwama Island and architecture Masters student Danaja Vastic will design and supervise the build.

Please help us by donating.

In 2012 we opened a clinic on Bwama Island on Lake Bunyonyi in south west Uganda, which is operated in partnership with the Tropical Diseases Section of the Faculty of Medicine at the University. Before this the nearest medical facility was over 10km away in Kabale. The clinic has already made a big impact on the local community. It is totally free of charge and is the major primary care provider in the Lake area. In the year ended 30th June 2016 there were 41,906 patients treated, 115 babies delivered and 820 dental patients seen. It has become a vital facility.

But there is no housing for staff.

The clinic is centrally located on an island in the lake so that it is accessible to all the communities around. The main form of transport in the area is by canoe.  With no housing for staff it is difficult to provide medical services out of hours, e.g. should a patient fall ill over night or a lady go into labour. The overnight ward has not even opened yet due to lack of housing.  There is little local accommodation available and we face staff attraction and retention issues.

We want to fix this situation so that the clinic is well staffed and can operate to its full capacity.

Under the direction of Professor Anja Planiscek, architecture Masters student Danaja Vastic will design and supervise the build of the staff housing complex. Danaja and three of her fellow students will travel to Uganda in late June to commence the building work. Take a look at the first draft of the plans.

Aerial of clinic

Danaja Vastic is doing her Masters at the university and this project will form part of her finals. The designs will incorporate local materials and innovative ideas. A local builder and local workers will assist in the build. This is a project that can be completed in stages and as the health centre grows we will be able to add more housing units.

We have already raised £13,000 but we need £30,000. This is a huge challenge but we are positive!

If we don’t raise the full amount we will build what we can. The more money we raise the more houses we can build. Any extra we raise will enable us to put in solar panels. So every contribution, however small, will improve the situation at the clinic.

Please help us to raise the funds for this project. Your support is so important and even the smallest contribution is welcome. Thank you.

You can read the full annual report of the clinic here.

Doctors On Bwama Island

April 5, 2016 3 comments

Short report from the medical doctors from Slovenia who worked at the Bwama Health Centre.

Aerial of clinic

The Bwama Health Centre is a fine example of international cooperation, in this case, the cooperation of Slovenian doctors and nurses that work within the section of tropical medicine of the medical faculty of the University of Ljubljana,  Edirisa UK and the Ugandan public health services. Staff from Slovenia have been coming regularly to this part of Uganda since 2006, trying to provide a steady and quality health service for the people living in the vicinity of Lake Bunyonyi.

Daily we examined on average forty to fifty patients during our regular hours and emergency cases and deliveries at other times in the day or night. In 2015 over 3,000 adults and 8,000 children were examined and 96 babies delivered.

Waiting area May 2014

Our working day starts with taking patients’ vitals and writing them in the patients books. The work then continues in our examination rooms, where we talk to and examine our patients with the help of translators. When we reach a diagnosis, the patient goes to the pharmacy, gets written into the registry for the purposes of the local district health officer, and receives the proper medicine. If they require additional treatment or diagnostics, unavailable at our health centre, they are referred to Kabale regional hospital – 10 km away.  During our time at the island we have had quite a few baby deliveries, and more are to be expected to come, when the new maternity ward will be operational. For now, many women still chose to give birth at home, which is partly the reason for a high perinatal children mortality rate. The clinic is offering ante natal visits and maternity aftercare which is making a big difference. All these services are offered free of charge.

The outpatients clinic, built by Edirisa UK and equipped by us, has three examination rooms; a small laboratory with equipment for basic tests; pharmacy; storage room; room for dental services and a room for measuring vital signs of the patients. Medicines are provided by the government and part by the funds gathered in Slovenia. Power for the clinic is from solar panels which we have been slowly increasing. There is now enough power for the use of our dental chair, which we brought with us from Slovenia.

Bwama C3

The local people had not seen anything like it – it moves!

The other part of the building is the staff quarters for visiting doctors –  a living room and kitchen area and two bedrooms. This part is only used by Slovenian doctors and other staff while they are working at Bwama. Outside of this building, there is also a small shower and toilet facilities for us and separate facilities for the patients.

The other building is a maternity ward, part built by the Government and being finished by Edirisa UK, it is almost completed and now needs equipping.

We believe the clinic is a cause well worth supporting and it is our hope that cooperation between the three parties involved continues for years to come.

Uganda 2014 139

A group of doctors who worked at the clinic

 

 

HAPPY NEW YEAR and read all about 2015

December 31, 2015 Leave a comment

Nursery kids July 2015

Wishing all our friends and supporters all the very best for a Happy and Prosperous 2016

Click here to read our 2015 newsletter and find what we have been doing in Uganda

Amazing work at Special Needs Centre by Carpe Diem Groups

November 26, 2013 Leave a comment

We recently hosted 2 groups from Carpe Diem Education, Portland, Oregon at SNEC – our Special Needs Education Centre at Kitanga. Their Program Director, Adam Fischer, suggested that on this visit they should get involved in something a little more physical – as well as doing something with the kids. We hope they forgive him for the suggestion as we set them the task of creating a concrete pathway from the dormitories to the classroom so the kids who use wheelchairs can move about more easily. It was a tough task!

Digging

Digging

The first group with Edirisa UK Operations Manager George Kakonge

The first group with Edirisa UK Operations Manager George Kakonge

Here’s what George said:

“For us here what we thought was going to be a busy and stressful time turned out to be an enjoyable time. Both groups the Nkula and the Kifaru were all nice, hard working people. The first group were able to interact with the children more and painted the T.shirt for them. The work to dig the path was also done successfully. The length of the path that was made is 103 meters.”

New T Shirts!

New T Shirts!

“The second group however had a big challenge because mixing concrete became a really hard job. In Kabale town you can see a machine mixing those things but at SNEC those machines are not available.So the 2nd group members did their best and one thing I noticed was that both girls and boys were very strong and that surprised me!”

Concreting

Concreting

Path making

“The path is very important to the children as some of them really need it for wheel chairs and others now have a better place to walk. Some have to crawl on it which is better than using a muddy path.”

After their busy time at SNEC the groups had more physical activity – canoeing on Lake Bunyonyi and trekking through the mountains with Edirisa Canoe Treks – http://edirisa.org./?language=1&cat=27 – we hope they enjoyed themselves.

Huge THANKS to all the Carpe Diem students and their leaders – you make such a difference to the lives of the children at SNEC and we look forward to more groups next year!

Water is Life

February 11, 2013 1 comment

We all take fresh water for granted, but what would you do if the tap didn’t work?

With the help of the Kigezi Diocese Water and Sanitation Department we have just installed another 8 four thousand litre water tanks in the Buranga District of the Kabale region. This brings our total to 80 tanks installed over the last 3 years.

New tank

New tank

 

These household tanks change the lives of the recipients who no longer have to walk miles to fetch their water. The tanks are installed at the homes of the elderly, disabled and HIV families.

Tank recipient

Tank recipient

Quote: ‘This is a God given tank; there are many other weak, old people like us who have been given tanks like us. We are very happy and grateful to those who provided the funds. We shall take care of the tank so that the water remains close by, as we know everything requires maintenance.

Tank recipients

Tank recipients

 

This is an extract from a letter of thanks:

 

Life has greatly changed since we got the water tanks as follows:

• We, the elderly, have water near our houses; we have enough to drink after boiling it.
• We are able to do work in time because the water is near by.
• Our children no longer suffer the burden of fetching water
• The level of sanitation and hygiene has greatly improved because we have enough water to clean our cloth, bath, and clean household utensils.

Even people who have not befitted from the tanks are also happy that their neighbors have received the tanks benefited because they sometimes share the water.

 

Water provision can be a challenge to those living with HIV and their care-givers. Culturally it’s a child’s job to fetch water for the family, with children in rural areas travelling long distances with no guarantee that the water source is clean and safe. Being given a rainwater-harvesting tank means a clean source of water, which highly reduces their risk of secondary infection.

The area is very hilly and is home to approx. 26,200 residents. Typical houses are constructed of dirt floors, clay walls and corrugated tin roofs.

Rev Reuben checking the tap

Rev Reuben checking the tap

A household water tanks costs around £400 – this includes training in maintenance and sanitation. Our programme is ongoing and donations are gratefully accepted
at http://www.edirisa.org.uk/Donate.html

Clinic News!

October 22, 2012 Leave a comment

The doctors and medics from the Tropical Medicine School in Slovenia have now left Bwama Island and are heading home.

Whilst at the clinic they have achieved a lot in such a short time. The contract has been signed for the floors to be finished off with a special screed and for the work benches to be built and installed. Meanwhile they have been improvising.

One of the first patients at the clinic

One of the first patients at the clinic

 

They bought some basic tables and chairs and one of the girls enjoyed sitting on the verandah sewing curtains.

Sewing on the verandah

 

The Pharmacy

The Pharmacy

The government are in the process of building the maternity and overnight ward, you can just see the building on the photo above, right hand side up on the bank.

Lots of things still left to do but we are getting there! Watch this space.

Clinic on Bwama Island, Uganda

October 18, 2012 Leave a comment

The building for the outpatients clinic and accommodation for international doctors on Bwama Island is almost finished and the Slovenian volunteer doctors have started work!

In July and August six volunteers from BRISTOL UNIVERSITY bought paints and brushes and set about the mammoth task of painting inside and out. Every day they canoed over from the Bufuka peninsular to Bwama Island and got stuck in! The builders were still working so they started painting the doctors accommodation.

BVDA Volunteers with Graham Carter

BVDA Volunteers with Graham Carter

Massive thanks for all that hard work. The building is now awaiting the installation of the water harvesting tank, the required funds have been raised and work should start soon. Now we are busy raising funds for the solar installation.

Here are some recent photos of the clinic.

Just before the gutters went on

Just before the gutters went on

With gutters

With gutters

The waiting area needs some benches!

Waiting area

Waiting area

At the end of September we welcomed a new group of medical volunteers from Slovenia, who will be with us for one month and will help us to open the new clinic. The Section for Tropical Medicine at The University of Ljubljana has been sending volunteers to work at Bufuka for several years now and the clinic has been built to give them better working conditions and to improve patient care around Lake Bunyonyi. The Tropical Medicine School has partnered with us on this project and are responsible for furnishing and equipping the clinic.

The volunteers have moved some equipment and old solar panels from Bufuka over to the island and have had a taste of the work that went into the building; all the materials for the clinic – bricks, cement, hardcocre etc –  was taken by boat  across the lake and then carried up to the site. They had to do the same, all the medical equipment,  boxes of medicines, medical supplies, books, benches, tables, shelves and their luggage they carried over! By the end of the day everyone had had a good workout and was thoroughly tired of moving boxes. Well done for all that effort!

After that it was time for the government staff to move into the new clinic. They had been working from an old building on the island so moved all their equipment and medicines to the new building, ready to begin work with their Slovenian colleagues. Of course in true Ugandan style this move also called for a small celebratory party, with traditional food cooked by the local village women. The next day was spent unpacking and lots of cleaning!
Now the clinic is open the volunteers are spending their time between treating patients and managing carpenters, locksmiths and electricians. Some of the girls have even become tailors, sewing home made curtains (the eyes of all-too-curious school children are keen to see what the Muzungu are doing at all hours of the day!).

For now staff and volunteers at the Health Centre have opened two clinic rooms for wounds and bandages, a microscopy delivery room, and of course room for the reception of patients. The local staff are enjoying working with the volunteers and have excitedly discussed how “very experienced” they are, as well as being impressed that some are already learning the local language.

For us at Edirisa it’s very rewarding to see what was just an empty building a few weeks ago becoming a fully-fledged Health Centre.