Hello Again to all of our generous donors and Happy New Year!
It is almost hard to believe that a year has gone by- a thought that runs through my head on the brink of almost every New Year nowadays…
Last January I remember writing to all of you about our inclusion in the ABC series, “Be the Chance to Save a Life” sponsored by The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. It was a very proud moment for our clinic and our camels, both of whom are still tirelessly chugging along to meet the increasing demands of our communities.
The last quarter for the Community Health Africa Trust has been busier than usual. Apart from family health matters (including cases of malaria, pneumonia and tuberculosis, advice and treatment for HIV/AIDS), we are being asked ever more frequently for family planning advice and contraception.
We ran a month-long Camel Clinic between 24th September and 24th October, which went smoothly and achieved a great deal.
Our team has proven to be proficient in marketing and communications, alongside of treatment, tapping into local radio stations broadcast in the vernacular, and sending text messages through their mobile phones, informing communities of the clinics arrival. Now more and more people turn up for our clinics. And when the team arrives, they are now most often greeted by a long queue!
The camel clinic is never without its surprises- one example this month being a herd of elephants charging right at the procession. Luckily we have a very quick thinking driver who rightly placed his vehicle in between the upset eles and the Camel Caravan and the collision was thankfully thwarted.
While out visiting these communities, our staff pinpointed another urgent need and that is for more counsellors to give lectures to the Samburu and Turkana men in their tribal languages on the benefits of family planning. They still remain largely ignorant in this matter and most are keen to learn about it. This will ultimately help their women to apply for contraception. Nevertheless, women seem to courageously make decisions as they must, and seek contraception on their own, as they see fit.
On this month-long expedition, the team treated 660 women with the 5-year injection for contraception (JADELLE), while 96 women asked for the 3-month DEPO. CT had over 320 clients. Some cases of tuberculosis were noticed and were referred to their respective health centres and 309 to the Out Patient Department.
The trip was a great success, as they often prove to be, however, our team was not able to do as much as was required, due to lack of time and resources.
The mobile team included 8 staff: 1 nurse, 2 counsellors and 1 family planning/CBD agent, as well as 4 handlers for the 8 camels.
The total cost to C.H.A.T. for this mobile clinic was US$4648.00.
As always, we thank you for your contributions. Our work is in many ways thanks to yours. We will be in touch in a few months time.
Lots of salaams, and Happy New Year to all of you,
The team at CHAT.