Friday, May 29, 2009

Gifts from the US Embassy

The American Embassy in Freetown has become one of the newest supporters of the Welbodi Partnership and the Ola During Children’s Hospital.

Here are Embassy staff Lisa Baker and Laura Kustaborder, with ODCH matron Ruby IMG_0285Williams. They came to visit the hospital in April, to hand over the proceeds from a charity Mardi Gras ball the Embassy co-hosted in March to benefit the Welbodi Partnership and other charities.  The ball raised more than six million Leones – about $2,000 – and half of this went to the Ola During Children’s Hospital.

IMG_0277Staff of the hospital were grateful for the Embassy’s support. ODCH Specialist-in-Charge Dr. MAS Jalloh (right, with Laura) thanked the Embassy representatives and asked them to remember the hospital in the future. He also assured them that any donations would be well-used.

Since then, the Embassy has begun helping in ways big and small. Ambassador June Carter Perry met with the Welbodi Partnership coordinators to find out more about the organization’s work.  Lisa has agreed to help sell Sweet Salone cookbooks, the proceeds from which benefit the Welbodi Partnership, around the Embassy offices. And Laura, the Embassy’s health practitioner, arranged for a donation of new and used medical equipment to ODCH and the neighboring maternity hospital.

IMG_4136This equipment included a portable suction machine, boxes of oxygen masks and nasal cannulas, crutches, and other assorted supplies (see photo, right). She is also working to organize a blood drive for Embassy personnel to benefit the government’s blood services, which struggle with a constant shortage of blood.

We thank the Embassy staff for their support and look forward to a long partnership.

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