Apr 30, 2018

Health Workers receive training in trauma relief

Health workers learning Trauma Relief Excercises
Health workers learning Trauma Relief Excercises

The Trauma Relief Exercises (TRE) training at Hlokomela is in full swing! Seventeen (17) rural health workers from Hoedspruit, Tzaneen and Phalaborwa areas are already feeling the effects of the training on their own bodies.

Under the expert guidance of Dr. Erika Coertzen, they are beginning to experience the effects of TRE as they enter into the process of chronic stress relief. ‘ I feel different in my body’, ‘the stiffness and tiredness is reducing’, ‘emotions like sadness are coming up’ and ‘the pain in my ankles is better’ are some of the effects Hlokomela’s rural health workers are experiencing as their bodies begin to release trauma, tension and stress.

After 3 of the 9 course days, participants are motivated and excited to see the first results on themselves. They are learning how trauma and chronic stress affect the body and nervous system, how to recognize when someone is experiencing extreme reaction during TRE and are practicing on each other how to deal with this. They practice TRE at home on their own and soon they will be encouraged to start facilitating other people in one-on-one situations, taking notes and reporting back during the course.

With the continued support of our GlobalGiving family, Hlokomela will be able to tackle trauma debriefing in rural communities as our 17 rural health workers in training are eager to take on the task. Thank you GlobalGiving for making this project possible!

Dr Erika Coertzen teaching TRE at Hlokomela
Dr Erika Coertzen teaching TRE at Hlokomela


Apr 25, 2018

Early interventions saving lives

Dr Sarah Zeb (middle) with Hlokomela staff.
Dr Sarah Zeb (middle) with Hlokomela staff.

It’s time for an update again, oh how time flies! A lot has happened during the past three months here at the Hlokomela Women’s Clinic.

Our Ultrasound Nurse, Sonja Botha, attended two Ultrasound training courses in Johannesburg, Gauteng. She was trained in basic obstetric scanning as well as abdominal and pelvic scanning. A need for these kinds of examinations had been identified and we are proud to now offer this service also.  

She is using her training daily and in this way improving on her skills and on the quality and spectrum of services we can provide to our patients.  In May 2018 she will be attending a 4D training workshop. This will enable us to provide expectant mommies with beautiful images of their unborn babies. This will be a first for many patients!

Sadly, two patients were diagnosed with BIRADS 5* findings in their breasts! Both ladies in one week! They were sent to a referral hospital for biopsies. Results are currently pending. If it was not for the ultrasound services we provide, these pathologies would probably never have been detected, or probably only when it was much too late.

Dr Sarah Zeb, from Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore USA, volunteered at the Hlokomela Women’s Clinic during the month of April. She is a specialist in the field of breast imaging and ultrasound. Dr Zeb worked with Sonja and shared some of her knowledge and skills. This was a wonderful opportunity for our staff and a great experience to have Dr Zeb visit us. She also sponsored much needed teaching material which we are grateful for.

Thank you to you, our GlobalGiving family, for continuously making it possible for us to do what we do and save lives!

*When a radiologist interprets an ultrasound image, he or she assigns a score to it used to communicate with doctors about how concerned he or she is about the findings. Did anything look abnormal? How serious is the abnormality that was found? This and other information is efficiently summed up in one number, called the Breast Imaging Reporting and Data System (BI-RADS) score.


Jan 29, 2018

New year, new resolution.

Welcome back to Hlokomela’s newsletter!

We hope everyone had a great new year but for us, the work has only just begun.
A new year is upon us, with our resolutions and resolve we are aiming to expand certain areas:

Online expansion - Our outreach on social media will be expanded to spread awareness and to show our proactive approach within the community, helping us with this mission, a new volunteer has joined our team for marketing/social media and fundraising, (a lot of work) but we found that we needed a dedicated person to manage all these aspects, as running Hlokomela is challenging on its own, this will now take pressure off some of the permanent staff members who were carrying this weight.

Keeping ahead of the curve - New medical training for staff including abdominals and obstetric ultrasound, we aim to keep our staff up to date, as medicine is always changing, we need to keep on top.

From Hlokomela, we’d like to thank all of our team across the sites for their hard work and dedication last year, we hope to have another successful year.

Last but not least, a big thank you to the donors, without your support this wouldn’t be possible!


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