East Africa Aid Foundation

Our mission is to provide an opportunity, a helping hand, for those who have little-to-none to live by and learn with. We are a not-for-profit organization founded to assist with the collection of charitable donations from interested parties, multinational corporations, and healthcare organizations to fund educational & healthcare projects in multiple locations in the East Africa region.
Jun 17, 2013

UKUN Volunteer Diary (Week Five)

Inside UKUN Office
Inside UKUN Office

My fifth week was spent with moving to our new office and visits to Mariam and Mr Captain. I also got to know about one of UKUN’s long term client Mr Hamisi Tanga and his sister.

I arrived back from Dar Es Salaam on Tuesday as I spent Easter there (Sun /Mon). We moved to the new office on Wednesday. We hired removal van and Abdullah was also helping us and Charles really enjoyed the exercise! After two trips we were done. We had to put all the furniture to the second room of the building as the room we have rented needs cleaning and painting before we can move in. I can use some of my sponsor money for the paints and we can do it with my two new volunteer friends Mathilde and Sofie as they have experience of painting. They have decided to work with me and I could not be happier about that! We are planning to work on the new office from Monday next week.

Mariam had her appointment date for hospital for Friday but we did not take her as the CD4 machine is not working and that what she needed to have done. I will take her next week (if it is back on working!). I picked up more medications for her (ARVs) and for Abdullah.

Charles and previous volunteer Debbie told me about Mr Hamisi Tanga who has been UKUN’s client over 10 years now. He has been suffering from gynaecomastia (male breast enlargements) since 2008. I was told that it could be a side-effect from one of his ARV medication. He needs to go to Muhimbili hospital in Dar Es salaam to see specialist as this problem has become unbearable to him. I was told he used to go to Muhimbili regularly but due to lack of money he had stopped going and now he came to the office and showed Charles that the breast have grown even larger. He is too sick to use local transport and will need a taxi as a transport. At Muhimbili they need to find out which medications are causing this. Charles said he will need several visits, approximately one per month but does not know how long for. I could use my sponsor money to take him but the transport is not cheap (around £40 per trip) and if this will be on-going thing we will need more sponsors.

I visited Hadija and her family asI was supposed to be escorting her to CCTRB hospital in Dar to see eye specialist. However they told me they could not get the car now.

May 28, 2013

UKUN Volunteer Diary (Week Four)

Captain with Mathilde and Micu
Captain with Mathilde and Micu

My fouth week began badly as I was sick with bad stomach for three days. Once I got better I continued Mr Captain’s visits and got introduced to another family of UKUN’s clients by Charles. This was our last week also at the old UKUN office.

I visited family that all three generations are infected with HIV; grandmother, mother Hadija and her two children Mohamedi and Farida. Hadija is a very cheerful lady who has been blind for three years now. Doctors said this was due to pressure in her head. Her mother (the grandmother) looks after the household and she does it really well as far as I can see. She cooks and cleans and all the family appear really well looked after. They do not appear malnourished and are in very good spirits. Hadija hopes to go to see specialist in Dar Es Salaam Muhimbili Hospital to find out why she cannot see and if there is any treatment for her. She really hopes to be able to see again. The family told me that they have their cousin who can take them to Dar Es Salaam next week and want me to go with them. Both of Hadija’s HIV positive children appear well and go to school. I will visit this family weekly and give them support if they have any issues arising. At the moment they seem fine. I do worry for the grandmother as she is probably very worried what will happen to the family if she gets sick. She seems like a‘supergranny’!

Mr Captain was his usual self. He is eating well now and has already gained some ‘meat’ around his stomach.  My friend Chanzie visited from Dar Es Salaam and volunteered to give Mr Captain a shave and a haircut- he looks ten years younger now!

In the weekend we started packing UKUN’s old office with Abdullah to move into the new office next week. It is located in Old Huruma Dispensary and also near to town. We need to get sponsors for the rent so I need to take a lot of photos I have not seen the place as the landlord is away but Charles said it was very nice and easily accessible. I am looking forward to the new office and a new start.

At the weekend I also met two really nice girls Sofie and Mathilde from Denmark who were looking for volunteer work! They are staying here two more months. I will meet with them end of next week (they are going now to Zanzibar!) and hopefully we will work together.

May 28, 2013

Mr. Hamisi's visit to Muhimbili Hospital

Mr. Hamisi at MoH
Mr. Hamisi at MoH

 Today we took Hamisi one of our clients to Muhimbili Hospital in Dar Es Salaam. He has been suffering from gynaecomastia (male breast enlargements) since 2008. This could be side-effect from one of his ARVs (Antiretrovirals) and now the problem has become unbearable. His breasts have become very large and he is suffering from a lot of pain.

We started our trip at 6:30 am from our office in Bagamoyo where the driver picked us (Mathilde, Micu and Sofie) up from. After this we went to pick up our client Hamisi Tanga who lives in Bagamoyo town. We arrived at Muhimbili Hospital around 9:30 am. There were a lot of patients waiting for appointments, as Muhimbili is one of the biggest governmental hospitals located in the center of Dar Es Salaam. Hamisi is not really able to walk long distances so we got him a wheelchair from the hospital and pushed him to the new surgical building. We got our client registered and then waited for his file for an hour. After this we had to wait for him to see a doctor which took another hour. He was seen by a surgical specialist who took his full medical history. We discussed the possibilities for surgery which he said would be double mastectomy (removal of both breasts). He informed that it could be done at the governmental hospital, which would be a long wait and would cost around £40, or privately straight away at the cost of £600-£2000. Hamisi would now need to have his Hb and CD4 checked and have a x-ray done. The doctor also prescribed medication for his tremor which is another side-effect from his ARV-medication.

We split up in three; Mathilde went to the pharmacy, Micu went to register with the new appointment and Sofie stayed with Hamisi to wait for his blood-test to be done. This took about two hours. After this we went to the x-ray which took full three hours because they lost his file in between! The x-ray was never reviewed because the doctor had gone home. Therefore we brought the x-ray pictures home, so it can be taken to his next appointment which is in two weeks time, 16/5 2013. At the next appointment they will inform us whether he will be fit for surgery, this will depend on the CD4 and Hb results. Finally we were done, just before sunset (6 pm) and driver picked us up at Muhimbili. Unfortunately we were stuck in the traffic in Dar Es Salaam and got home around 10 pm all exhausted and tired.   

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