11 May 2011

Consolidating for the future

As we've emphasized elsewhere in this blog, our intention is to establish eye services that will be staffed, financed and organized locally. Fully achieving this objective may still be a way off yet, but we continue to work at laying the foundations.

Recently, we were able to visit Malawi again and do some more foundation laying. We found a source for medications in the South of the country and are working out a way to get reliable and regular deliveries to Livingstonia. We have made contact with a government hospital in Mzuzu with a view to organizing visiting eye clinics for rural people unable to afford visits to the city. We've also joined a working group that has started co-ordinating the sponsors and supporters of the Ekwendeni School for the Blind.

And taken together with the home-grown and trained ophthalmic clinical officer now in place in Livingstonia, there is good cause for believing that progress towards a sustainable future is being made!

Angella completes clinical officer training

Many congratulations to Angella, who has now successfully completed her clinical officer training at Lilongwe, and is back home in Livingstonia, ready to start work at the new eye clinic there. Last week we visited her to celebrate and presented the clinic with the portable slit lamp donated by The MacNair Medical Mission Trust (see related post).

Ekwendeni Blind School children receive glasses, and more

The glasses dispensed at Essex County Hospital, for the children of the Ekwendeni School for the blind (see previous post), were delivered and fitted when we visited last week. And testing showed that all the children receiving the glasses had considerably improved vision. During the visit, the gifts of clothing sent by St Stephen's, Colchester, were handed out – and eagerly received.