HOSPITAL/MEDICAL FUND - A LITERAL LIFELINE
As you may know, we have a hospital fund for people in Kadawa and district. It has been made possible by generous gifts, and also we are contributing to it from income from The Widows' Farm.
Yes, although it is minimal right now, we are bringing in income. Folks in the village have learned about our corn (maize) sheller and will bring sacks of the cobs to the farm to be processed through the sheller. It removes the kernels from the cobs in no time flat. We charge 100 shillings (about $1.20 or 77 pence) per 90 kilo sack (about 202 lbs.). To do this the traditional way - by hand, one-kernel-at-a-time, is very, very time consuming. A large crop can take up to 6 weeks - 5 days a week, with a team of several people working daily. Plus, with a team it is required to feed them lunch - a cooked meal. The money received for this service goes into the hospital fund. We also have just planted a money crop which, when ready for harvest, will be used to feed the widows, but some will also be sold at the market and the money put into the hospital account.
The fund is administered by Violet Odindo, Pastor Hesbone's wife and is used for people in need of urgent medical care. We try to maintain the account year-round.
Here are is an excerpt from an e-mail sent by Violet:
"I want to really appreciate your support towards the sick in particular - may God bless
those who give towards it. Gladys and many others would be dead by now.
|Gladys in Hospital (the only photo we could get)|
Following are recent uses of the fund:
Gladys was unable to eat or hold food down - even for 5 minutes. Violet got her to hospital where she was diagnosed with TB, pneumonia and a stomach infection. She was discharged after 4 days with more energy and no longer vomiting. She was treated with x-rays, lab tests, and released with antibiotics, pain killers and 4 bottles of blood builder. The total expenses for her treatment were 14,650 Kenya Shillings (KES) - $170/£112; an unfathomable amount for a villager.
Lorna has been ill - one of her sides "seems to be failing". A stroke is suspected and she was prescribed some medicine. It wasn't possible to transport her to Kisumu, so a nurse in the church will be monitoring her in the village. Also an elderly gentleman was also
diagnosed with "early signs of a stroke and had signs of losing his mind". Medications prescribed for the two of them for one month cost 5,745 KES ($67/£44).
We are told that all three of these folks have recovered well from these illnesses. Lorna has had a further problem. She must use a "stick" to walk now. She is in her mid to late 80s and can't be kept from coming to church. She is so grateful for the restoration of her eyesight that she walks about 1.5 miles each way to church and home using her stick. Recently when walking home from church she fell onto a tree stump and cut her arm badly. She struggled home but was bleeding quite a lot throughout the night. Someone stopped by next morning and found her. She was taken to the hospital where she was sutured. Jeremy - our colleague - is going to Kadawa in a few days and he will check up on her for us.
We also have recently treated Mariko; he has prostate cancer and arrangements are being made for surgery.
|Mariko - always happy!|
A widow from Magwar has been treated for chronic ulcers and a three-year-old girl who had severe eye allergies. The medical fund is truly a God-send when it comes to eye allergies in children. Most of them, when treated early, are easily cured and their eyesight is saved. So many children have lost their sight due to simple eye infections left untreated.
One of the heart-breaks we have had to face is this little lad. His mother brought him into the eye clinic, but it was too late. He is 6 years old and blind for life, all for the lack of treatment for a simple eye condition. Such is life in Kenya. We don't understand things like this. (Marty cries a lot at the various clinics; sometimes for sorrow and sometimes for joy!)
If you would like to help with this fund, any amount is welcomed to our two accounts or to us directly.
UK: Emmanuel Christian Centre, Netherstowe,
Lichfieild, Staffordshire WS13 6TS, UK
USA: Dove Christian Fellowship Lebanon
P.O. Box 37, Lebanon, PA 17042, USA
Many, Many Blessings, John & Marty