Friends of Chitambo Logo

Friday, 23 December 2016

Season's Greetings from Friends of Chitambo


2016 has been another amazing year, tinged only by sadness at the news of the death of His Majesty Chief Muchinka, Chief of the Lala people.  Our thoughts are with the Chitambo community as they mourn the loss of their esteemed and much loved Chief this Christmas.

Chief Muchinka (centre), in royal robes, with Dr. Tiza Mufune, District Director of Health Far left); and Dr. Jean Paul Kandolo Nzinga, Senior Resident Medical Officer (far right) (2010)

Our thoughts are also here in Scotland, with the sad news that our Honorary President, Janet Knox, has fallen and sustained a hip fracture.  Janet has been battling metastatic breast cancer and other health problems.  However, thanks to the good fortunes of our Scottish NHS, she has now been to the operating theatre and had the fracture repaired.  Apparently she was awake and eating when her family visited.  She is much comforted by well-wishes from Zambian friends and has a copy of the photo below at her bedside.

Honorary President, Janet Knox, with Levi Chifwaila, Senior Nurse Tutor, Chitambo School of Nursing (Bonnyrigg, Scotland, June 2015)
We wish Janet a speedy recovery from the fracture.  We are enriched by the example of our Chitambo elders, Chief Muchinka and Ba Janet, who served as a nursing sister at Chitambo in the 1960s.  Her memories of that time remain strong and bright.

Here are a few images of our year.




Thank you to all our supporters and we wish you a very Happy Christmas and a prosperous 2017 when the time comes.

Thursday, 22 December 2016

More Scottish/Zambian connections

Our Penicuik Christmas Street Fair was a great success again, with particular thanks to Gillian who put in a lot of work on producing goods for sale and enlisting a kind friend to help with the stall.  Thanks, too, to Catriona who came out from Edinburgh to help.

Catriona 'man's' the stall

We were also very much blessed by the presence of Scottish/Zambian community member, Davis and his young son Tengy.  Ba Davis is a highly talented gentleman, with experience of working in Scotland and Zambia.  He has joined Friends of Chitambo and will be a great asset to the cause.

Young Tengy, however, could be even more of an asset.  As an aspiring young businessman in his own right, he bought a raffle ticket and won our Christmas hamper!  We need him on board.

Ba Davis and Tengy

Tengy has a winning streak!
However, Tengy is not our youngest member.  That's David, aged nearly 2.  His Mum, Olu (originally from Nigeria) is our Acting Treasurer.  At our recent Friends of Chitambo  AGM and 3rd birthday party, we gave David a toy ambulance....the Chitambo ambulance in miniature....and we are thinking of enlisting him on Levi's proposed First Aid for ambulance drivers course.  He may be young but he's very bright and a fast young learner.  He is bound to excel!


Tuesday, 20 December 2016

Our Honorary President

The link between Ron Swanson and Friends of Chitambo runs even deeper.  Our Honorary President, Mrs. Janet Knox, was a close friend of the family during her days as Nursing Sister at Chitambo.  See Janet pictured below, in her nurse's uniform, together with Chitambo missionaries and their children:

Janet Knox, in nurse's uniform, with Chitambo missionaries and their children 
Janet was Aunty Janet to Ron and his siblings!

Very sadly, Janet is gravely ill with metastatic breast cancer, although she remains typically brave and in good humour.



Our beloved  Honorary President, Janet Knox


Local Friends, Jo, Margaret and Gillian, recently enjoyed an indoor picnic with her.  After a sumptuous feast of Giovanni Bistro sandwiches (supplied by Margaret) and many other 'goodies', we repaired to Janet's bedroom so that she could put her feet up whilst we read extracts from a book about the transition to Zambian independence and reminisced about her Chitambo days.

It was an intimate and memorable occasion with much laughter and fun...just as our President wants it.

She was also very appreciative of email communications from Levi Chifwaila, Senior Nurse Tutor at Chitambo School of nursing.  Levi met Janet during his visit to Scotland (June 2015), on behalf of our Scottish Government-funded Small Grant project on 'Strengthening emergency care communications in Chitambo District'.


Levi with Janet, June 2015
 Janet is much comforted by Levi's emails.

Our love is with her.



Great Scots!

There's a lot of catching up to do!

Friends of Chitambo Trustee, Richard Vallis, was selected to receive the Great Scot Award on behalf of Lung Ha Theatre Company, which he founded: http://lungha.com/

Lung Ha is a leading Scottish Theatre Company for people with learning disabilities.  This prestigious event took place on 29th October, at the Double Tree Hilton Hotel, Glasgow: http://www.7daysscotland.co.uk/sites/events/a_great_scot/


L to R: Richard Vallis; Paul Vallis (Lung Ha volunteer); Stephan Tait (Actor, seated); Dan Wallace (Silver Medalist for swimming, Rio Olympics, 2016)

Nice that the event also honoured leading individuals from Scotland's ethnic minority groups, including  murdered Glasgow shopkeeper Asad Sha, and Kalhid Ghelan who raised over £300,000 for judo stat Stephanie Inglis's treatment, following a motor bike accident in Vietnam,  Both these awardees received standing ovations and Kalhid Ghelan was the overall winner of the Great Scot Award.

Richard is a truly Great Scot: in his own right and recently also won Archery Scotland's Coach of the year Award for his contributions to Disability Archery: http://scottisharchery.org.uk/news/scottish-archery-awards-agm

The Great Scot event also doubled as a golden opportunity to meet up with Ron Swanson, another Great Scot with a Chitambo connection.

L to R: Jo Vallis; Ron Swanson; Richard Vallis at the Double Tree Hilton Hotel, Glasgow


Read Ron's explanation below:

"After 56 years, it was wonderful to meet up with Dr Jo and Richard Vallis.
Jo’s family - the Currie’s and the Swanson family were brought up together, in the early 1960’s, in the Chitambo Hospital Mission Station, in what was Northern Rhodesia, now Zambia.
Chitambo has major historical links with Scotland, as it is where the famous missionary/explorer David Livingstone died – the hospital is known as Livingstone’s hospital.
Jo Vallis is the founder and chair of the charity “Friends of Chitambo” supporting the wonderful work of the hospital, serving a community of 100,000 people – just slightly smaller than Ayrshire.
As a family, we are planning a very special nostalgic visit to Chitambo in 2017 to experience at first hand the lasting legacy of the late Ron & Mary Swanson who in 1960 left the comfort of Glasgow, with their three very young children, to serve as Church of Scotland missionaries; with our father being responsible for the building and construction of many of the hospital buildings, including a maternity wing, nurses hostel, the Doctor’s and two Nursing Sisters houses – the good news, nearly 60 years later, the buildings are still standing and being fully utilised to support the needs of the community.
The old photos include a very young Ron & Mary Swanson, with their three bare footed children – Elizabeth (7), Ronald (3) & baby Andrew (6 months).
We have so much to be thankful for ……..."

Ron's Dad, also Ron Swanson, was a missionary builder at Chitambo and built the 'old' student nurse hostel, which is still in use today:


'Old' student nurse hostel, built by Ron Swanson Snr.


Here are some photo of the your Ron at Chitambo:




Nowadays, Ron Chairs the vibrant Ayrshire-based charity Centrestage: http://www.centrestagemusictheatre.co.uk/

Their Facebook page is an inspiration to us on getting our message 'out there' and we are working on developing our own page.

Tuesday, 1 November 2016

NHS Education for Scotland (NES) Resources go global

Scottish and Zambian partners presented a conference poster and paper simultaneously in London and Kampala.  This was as part of our Scottish Government Small Grant project on strengthening emergency care communications : CLICK HERE FOR THE FULL STORY


Twittering for Chitambo

New Zambia programme
 Zambia had been chosen as one of 4 partners for future for the Scottish International Development (ID) programme http://news.scotland.gov.uk/News/Scotland-s-place-as-global-citizen-2be5.aspx.
news.scotland.gov.uk
Scotland will build upon partnerships with four countries to deliver a number of International Development works streams, Alasdair Allan announced today.
#ScotlandAfricaWeek
Scottish Government is running Twitter conversation this week (w/c 31 October) which they  are calling #ScotlandAfricaWeek – encouraging people to tweet and share their relationships/work with Africa, or send us photos to tweet.
This is to celebrate the 11th anniversary of the Scottish Government’s International Development programme on 3 November, and the team will be highlighting a wide range of existing Scotland/Africa links on our @ScotGovID twitter account using the hashtag #ScotlandAfricaWeek.  The idea is that they generate publicity, not just for international development work/aid in Africa, but also all the other positive links they have, such as with the African diaspora communities in UK and specific activities which people might not always recognise as contributing to that relationship.  Ultimately they want to tell a bigger, more positive story than just ‘aid for Africa.’  

Thursday, 27 October 2016

Livingstonia Blantyre Zambia Fellowship 2016

This annual gathering of ex-missionaries took place at St. Cuthberts Church, Lothian Road, Edinburgh, Scotland on Saturday 22nd October 2016.  This is a magnificent venue, in the shadow of the castle rock:


Edinburgh castle

St. Cuthbert himself


This was a different venue from the usual Mayfield Church, Causewayside, Edinburgh, Scotland, which was oversubscribed this year.

 An invited  speaker, from Christian Aid, talked about the Malawi Food Crisis.

Thanks to Secretary David Bone, Friends of Chitambo were invited to hold our usual small stall.

Home baking was a bit of a rush since Jo had only just returned from London at 1 am the same day.   However, some gingerbread was duly produced:




Margaret and Gillian had offered to help and brought a mass of good to sell: Margaret's CDs, Janet's tea towels, and Gillian's attractive cards.  Richard was out trusty driver.  

However, there was a slight crisis on arrival.  Richard's artificial knee joint gave way and he and Jo had to head home for a change of leg!.   Margaret and Gillian kindly set up  the stall and, although Richard and Jo missed the talk, they arrived back in time for questions and  the tea!


Friends of Chitambo stall, L to R, Gillian, Margaret, and speaker from Christina Aid


Thank you to the event organisers for having us again, and to all the generous donors who bought our goods.  These funds will go towards emergency radios at Chitambo's hardest to reach clinics.  That will make a difference.

From Chitambo to Chitambo!

A belated Happy 52nd Anniversary of Zambian Independence everyone (Monday 24th October 2016).


Friends of Chitambo Trustee, Ba Chola, celebrated it by holding a stall in our honour, at his local Independence day celebrations in the English midlands.

Ba Chola and Ba Loveness 'man' the Friends of Chitambo stall


All the more impressive since, although Chola lives and works as a nurse in England, he is from Chitambo originally and is determined to 'give back' to his home community as far as possible.

On a recent re-visit home, where he co-conducted monitoring and evaluation on behalf of our grant-funded project, he became aware that some of the rural health clinics have very little in the way of electricity.  This is very difficult as they may sometimes be delivering babies or dealing with other emergencies by the light of a mobile phone.  Clinic staff indicated  that solar lights would help and the funds raised on Chola's stall will partly go towards this cause.

Twatotela sana mukwai Ba Chola and Ba Loveness and mwabombeni mukwai

This is a wonderful effort and a great example of Zambian Diaspora volunteering on behalf of the motherland


Monday, 24 October 2016

Health is global

Here are brief reports from 3 global health conferences taking place in mid-October 2016:

1. The Zambian UK Health Workforce (ZUKHWA) conference, Zambian Embassy, London, Wednesday 19th October:

This annual conference organised by  the University of Edinburgh Global Health Academy: http://www.ed.ac.uk/global-health/research/project-profiles/health-systems-strengthening/zukhwa
 The meeting was well attended by  ZUKHWA members, UK-Zambians and others and was jointly chaired by the Zambian High Commissioner, His Excellency Mr. Muyeba Chikonde, and Lord Nigel Crisp, Independent member of the House of Lords/Co-Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Global Health.

Keynote speakers included Dr, Peter Mwaba, Permanent Secretary for Health, Ministry of Health, Zambia, and Professor Evarist Njelesani, Deputy Vice-Chancellor/Founding Dean, Lusaka Apex Medical University.  Unfortunately, Dr. Mwaba was unable to attend and Ms. Eunice Sinyemu, THET-Zambia Country Manager, stepped in at very short notice to give an overview of Zambian health policy.  This was a most enjoyable day.


2. The Tropical Health Education Trust (THET) annual conference followed on from ZUKHWA, on Thursday 20th and Friday 21st October: http://www.thet.org/

 It was held at the Resource of London, Holloway, London. The theme was 'Evidence, effectiveness and impact' and the packed programme was opened by keynote presentations from: Dr Jim Campbell, Director of the Health Workforce Department, WHO; Hon Dr Joyce Moriku Kaducu, State Minister for Health - Primary Health Care, Uganda; and Rory Stewart, OBE MP FRSL, Minister of State for International Development.

The emphasis was on North/South health partnerships.  There were many excellent breakout sessions and speakers and THET launched a new report,  'In our mutual interest', advocating the mutual benefits of global health links:  http://www.thet.org/resource-library/in-our-mutual-interest

3. The Association of Health Information and Libraries in Africa (AHILA) conference was taking place simultaneously, at Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda (Monday 17th to Friday 21st October): http://ug-ahila.org/

 By a miracle, our Zambian project partners, Consider and Vincent, were presenting the same paper and poster on the same day at almost the same time as FoCh Chair, Jo, was presenting these at the ZUKHWA conference in London!  If that is not Co-development and Mutuality, what is?!  

Here are links to our joint paper which is about knowledge translation: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B6Xci-Qh9PixeERxLWVTd0FRS00/view?usp=sharing

WhatsApp communications were flying between the 2 venues (London and Kampala).  Here are some photos:


Jo presents the poster in London 

Consider presents the poster in Kampala



Friday, 14 October 2016

Going viral?

Is our Scottish Government Small Grant project on 'Strengthening emergency care communications in Chitambo District, Zambia' going viral?  Partners are attending 3 global health conferences in one week and presenting at 2.   These conferences are:
Consider (In-country Project Coordinator) and Vincent (Information Officer) will be delivering the following paper at the AHILA conference on Wednesday 19th October: Ugandan confernece paper


This will be to an erudite international audience of health librarians and information scientists.  Friends of Chitambo Chair/Grant Lead, Jo, will be delivering the same paper to the ZUKHWA audience (which includes the Zambian High Commissioner, Lord Crisp, and the Zambian Permanent Secretary for Health!) on the same day, at a very slightly later time.


We are investigating ways of linking up by WhatsApp, so that Consider and Vincent can deliver their paper themselves to the London as well as the Ugandan audience. 


We will all, simultaneously, also be presenting the following project poster:Click here for the poster

Conference photos to follow.

Wednesday, 5 October 2016

NIDOS Annual Conference: Scotland for a Fairer World

2 Trustees attended the NIDOS (http://www.nidos.org.uk/) conference, 'Scotland for a Fairer World', on Thursday 29th September, Pollock Halls of Residence, University of Edinburgh: Click here for the conference programme

This was an opportunity to meet the new Scottish Minister for International Development, Alasdair Allan, MSP; to hear about the new NIDOS strategy 'Envisions 2020'; to vote in a new name for NIDOS (SINDA: Scottish International Development Association); to network with like minded people...but most of all to witness our Friend of Chitambo (Foch) Trustee, Agnes, being 'inaugurated' as a Trustee of NIDOS/SINDA.

Ba Agnes inaugurated as NIDOS Trustee
This was  a very proud moment for Foch as we now have 2 African Diaspora committee members in positions within Scotland's top International Development organisations.  Earlier in the year, our Acting Treasurer, Olu, who is originally from Nigeria, was appointed to a finance post at the Scotland Malawi Partnership (SMP), and now Agnes as a NIDOS Trustee. 

It was also thrilling to hear the Minister recognising Scotland's close historical links with Zambia, including that although Dr. David Lvingstone is often associated with Malawi, he actually spent more of his life in what is now Zambia, and died there...at Chitambo.  Well, at Old Chitambo (Chipundu, where the Livingstone monument is).  Chitambo Hospital was built in his memory, 100 miles away in less malarial territory...and still going today.  You'll not I do not say 'still going strong' because  that's the rub.  Despite it's huge historical connections with Scotland, Chitambo Hospital remains totally under resourced today.

The Minister particularly asked to meet groups which had Scottish Government Small Grant funds for projects in countries other than Malawi.  Scotland has a 'special relationship' with Malawi and the Minister is off to Malawi this week.  Hopefully he will be visiting Zambia..Chitambo...next?  Zambia is amongst the 4 new partner countries to be supported by Scottish Government funding: Malawi, Zambia, Rwanda, and Pakistan.  Click here for the Ministerial announcement: Ministerial announcement

The conference ended with an evening reception, including wonderful African storytelling and singing from Zawadi Choir.  The morale of one story was 'be careful what bones you throw out of your window'.  A woman, making soup, unthinkingly chucked the soup bone out of the window, unwittingly escalating full scale war between 2 villages.  A salutary lesson for us all?


Zawadi Choir entertains us



Tuesday, 4 October 2016

This is why

Folks,
Please see this sad news on the Mwebantu Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Mwebantu/posts/1076239432496151

A bad accident on the Mansa Road, in Chitambo District, has left 3 people dead and others, including a child, seriously injured.  Victims were apparently rushed to Mpelembe Rural Health Clinic (RHC), the nearest health facility.

Mpelembe is the biggest of Chitambo District's 3 'hard to reach' clinics in the Bangwelu Swamps, where David Livingstone died.  The other 2 are Gibson and Chipundu.

They have no mobile phone connectivity and depend on dysfunctional radios to make contact with the hospital (100 miles away on terrible roads) in case of such emergencies.  So how it was possible to rush injured people there is a mystery and, once there, they would face a 6 hour delay before an ambulance could get them to under-resourced, understaffed Chitambo District Hospital.

They might then face another 200 to 300 mile transfer to provincial or central emergency care services.  What are their chances? 

This is exactly why we are supporting Chitambo partner's ambition to strengthen emergency care communications in this remote and rural area.  High frequency digital radios are desperately needed at the 3 above mentioned 'hard to reach' clinics.  They cost in the region of £2,500 each.  We have raised enough for one but any help with raising the other 2 would be greatly appreciated. 

Please see our Total Giving donations button on this page, if you think you can help

We are 3!

Our AGM marked our 3rd birthday and we were in party mood, celebrating our many achievements over the year.

11  people, (7 committee members and 4 visitors), attended the meeting in the community  room at the Penicuik Library, Midlothian, Scotland.

10 people attended in person and one Shadow Trustee, Chola, attended by WhatsApp phone link when we were unable to access Skype.

 Chola is a nurse based in England.  However, he is from Chitambo originally and is dedicated to supporting the charity in whatever ways possible.

On his recent re-visit to Zambia, he joined forces with Consider , In-country Project Coordinator for our Scottish Government Small Grant project, on conducting a very successful Monitoring and Evaluation visit for the project (See our previous post on this below).

Of our 4 visitors, 2 are members and one has now opted to become one.  The former are Dr. and Mrs  Moffat.  Dr. Moffat is the grandson of David Livingston's nephew, Malcolm Moffat, who founded Chitambo Hospital (pictured).  The Moffats came with their South African cousin, who now is lives with them.

The 4th visitor is a local gentleman who knows Zambia well, having lived and worked there, and was interested to hear more about our charity work.

216 AGM: Committee members and visitors

Ba Mayo Margaret, Trustee, with FoCh banner
Here are some further photos courtesy of our Trustee and new Secretary, Agnes:







Click here for the Chair's report and Presentation: Chair's Report & Presentation

A particular thank you to our External Examiner, Ngemi, for agreeing our annual accounts. 
We are most grateful for his expert services.

And a  very big thank you to all our other Trustees, Members, Friends and Supporters who are contributing to making a difference at Chitambo, Zambia



Monday, 19 September 2016

AGM 2016

It's that time again.  Where does a year go?!

Join us, virtually or in person, for our Friends of Chitambo AGM:

When? Saturday 1st October 2016, 2-4 pm

Where? The Community Room, Penicuik Library, Carlops Road, PENICUIK, MIDLOTHIAN, SCOTLAND EH26 9PE: http://www.midlothian.gov.uk/info/200156/penicuik_library/1252/find_us

It has been a very exciting year and we look forward to telling you all about it.

Contact Jo Vallis, Chair, for information on joining virtually: jovallis@hotmail.com

Meantime, a huge thanks to all our regular supporters over the past year.   Mwabombeni mukwai (very well done).  You are making a real difference.

Hope you can join us



Monday, 12 September 2016

Elephant & Baby take 2!

The Penicuik re-run of the Elephant & Baby event (Sunday 11th September, at St. James the Less Episcopal Church) was highly successful. CLICK HERE FOR THE FLYER

Edinburgh GP, Dr. Bridget Innes, gave the sermon, which was on her medical and baby elephant conservation work in Zambia.  This was as part of a world celebration of creation and fauna.  Her talk fitted perfectly  with the theme and was very well received.  It was followed by a Fellowship Lunch in the church hall, in aid of our Friends of Chitambo emergency radio appeal.  As usual, the St. James congregation gave very generously and also enjoyed their soup to the accompaniment of Bridget's colourful slides.

Dr. Bridget gives the sermon
More sermon
Fellowship lunch 1

Fellowship lunch 2

Slides


 Thank you very much to all concerned!




Heady stuff

On Monday 6th September, 2 Friends of Chitambo Trustees (Jo and Agnes) took up the opportunity to meet UK Ministers for International Development, who were visiting Scotland.

The meeting was organised by the Network for International Development Organisations of Scotland (NIDOS): http://www.nidos.org.uk/

This was a valuable opportunity to hear directly about UK government plans for ongoing Overseas Development Aid (ODA).  It is heartening to hear that they remain committed to  ringfencing 0.7% of GDP for this...at least for now.  It was also good to hear that global links are encouraged and that, in Wales, each NHS Board has appointed a Champion for this.  It is hoped that Scotland, England, and Northern Ireland will follow this example.

The Scottish Goernment has announced a fresh round of Small Grant funding for international development: http://www.nidos.org.uk/news/scottish-government-launches-2016-small-grants-programme-funding-call

We are in talks with top Zambian and Scottish emergency care/medical experts about extending our current Small Grant project on 'Strengthening emergency care communications in Chitambo District'.  Please see our conference poster for some preliminary results: CLICK HERE FOR THE POSTER

The Zambian Ministry of Health (MOH) is enabling access to the free national shortcode for health (992) to all Chitambo District citizens, so that they can call for help free  of charge in case of emergency.  This is a huge step forward for desperate people in this remote, rural region.

Building on the project would entail, for example,  strengthening the current emergency care resource centre, established by this project, at Chitambo Hospital; monitoring the uptake and usage of the shortcode by the community; contributing to improving the emergency radio infrastructure, as far as possible; and providing simulated call handling and first aid training for clinical staff and ambulance drivers.

More soon.

Summer Street Fair 2016: Best stall award!

Great news!  This year we won the 'Best stall' certificate at the annual Penicuik Street  Fair (27th August 2016), awarded by the Penicuik Community Council!  Great publicity for our fast growing little African charity.

The day dawned bright and clear as the usual 4 stalwarts (Margaret, Gillian, Agnes and Jo) gathered in the Penicuik precinct to 'man' the stall.  This is one of our main fundraising events and it is a lot of work:  assembling the goods; transporting them to the site early enough to secure the best table slots; serving all day on the stall day; clearing up afterwards; and distributing the many raffle prizes far and wide.   We advertised for volunteers to help with future events and obtained a couple of notes of interest.  Meantime, heartfelt thanks to the current trusty team.

Raffle prizes included donations from successful local businesses: Giovannis Bistro; The Best Seller; and castle Warehouse.  A HUGE thanks to them too.  We really value your support and it is making a big difference in remote and rural Chitambo District, Zambia.

Proceeds are going towards a high frequency digital radio for Mpelembe Rural Health Clinic.  Please see our contribution to the Penicuik newsletter for details: CLICK HERE

This article has, amazingly, attracted a large scale donation from someone with Zambian connections.  They wish to remain anonymous but a HUGE thanks to them too.  This will really help the emergency radio cause, and will save lives.


Stall setting up
Team Chitambo (L to R Margaret, Gillian, Agnes, and Jo)
Ba Agnes displaying her Zambian crafts

Margaret
Gillian

Penicuik Hunter and Lass (Town Principals) support Friends of Chitambo
Jo receives the 'best stall' certificate



Monday, 29 August 2016

Monitoring & Evaluation visit to Chitambo

Congratulations to Zambian members of our Scottish Government Small Grant Team, Mr. Consider Mudenda, In-country Project Lead; Mr. Chola Mwelwa, Friends of Chitambo (Foch) Trustee and project Steering Group member; Mr. Vincent Kole, Chitambo Knowledge Consultant; and Mr. Levison Chifwaila, Clinical Consultant, for conducting a very successful monitoring and evaluation (M&E) visit at Chitambo last week (22nd to 26th August 2016).

The visit included meetings with key Chitambo Hospital and Rural Health Clinic staff; hearing about progress towards implementation of the free Zambian  national shortcode number for health (992); conducting upwards of 20 interviews on health workers' use of the knowledge resources provided by the project; assessing usage of some of the Information and Computer (ICT) devices also provided;  and meeting members of some Neighbourhood Health Committees regarding feedback on uptake and usage of the shortcode once it is in place.

Mr. Mwelwa, a nurse based in Chesterfield, England, is from Chitambo, his home village.  Opportunely, he was paying a visit home at the time of the M&E visit, with his wife and 12-year-old son Mumba.  Ba Chola kindly carried a conference poster for Consider and Vincent to deliver, along with a full paper, at the AHILA conference in Kampala, Uganda (October  2016), along with a USB stick containing a medical e-library, for the Chitambo Hospital emergency care resource centre provided by this project.  The e-library was donated by Scottish NGO MCAI: http://www.mcai.org.uk/

Chola is also carrying the completed evaluation forms back to the UK for analysis, in due course.


We will be writing reports but Consider has provided some great photos including some in which young Mumba kindly obliges by modelling both a Friends of Chitambo sponsored Life Wrap (http://www.safemotherhood.ucsf.edu/) and riding an ambulance bicycle.  The photos otherwise speak for themselves: M&E Visit to Chitambo August 2016&usp=sharing

Mr Mwelwa I presume?

Ba Chola assists with patient transfer

Consider and Chola on tour at Mpelembe

Who could disagree?

Young Mumba models a Life Wrap

Mumba models riding an ambulance bicycle