Monday, 21 December 2015

Season's Greetings from all at Friends of Chitambo

2015 what a year!  

Thank you to all our Friends and supporters.

Chitambo School of Nursing: Update

It's not so long since Chitambo School of Nursing's 2nd Intake received their first stripe on their caps and/or uniform lapels, at the Capping Ceremony in September 2015.  This was 6 months into training and marked their initiation into the profession.

Capping Ceremony

Capped students
The same students sat their first end of year exams on 14th December and Mr. Levi Chifwaila, Senior Nurse Tutor, sent this photo by WhatsApp.

End of year exams

Amongst these students are the 2 new candidates for the Friends of Chitambo Nurse Training Scholarship, one male, one female.  Further details of the  background reasons for their selection will follow.   However, meantime, we wish them all the very best with exam results and on-going training. 

The first 2 students whom we supported graduated in September, at the spectacular Graduation Ceremony (the day after the Capping Ceremony).  Hearty congratulations to them and to all their fellow graduates.  We wish you all very well in your future careers, serving Zambia's health care needs.

Chitambo School of Nursing Graduation Ceremony, September 2015 

'Our' first Friends of Chitambo Scholars!

Thursday, 17 December 2015

A wrap around the world?

Thanks to our 3 recent fundraising events (our Patron Julie Davidson's talk at the Scottish Government's 10th Anniversary of International Development
Celebrations; Hilary Mitchell's Edinburgh Quiz Night; and our regular Penicuik Christmas Street Fair stall, masterminded by our Trustees Margaret Coul and Gillian Little) we have raised enough to purchase around 12 Life Wraps (non-pneumatic ant-shock garments) for controlling haemorrhage in childbirth:
These have been expressly requested by doctors at Chitambo Hospital and we hope to be able to provide one to each of the 12 Chitambo Rural Health Clinics (2 based at Chitambo Hospital itself):
  (Map courtesy of

Post Partum Haemorrhage is all too common in this remote area where transport and communications are challenging and women often have to travel long distances by bicycle or on foot to obtain help in childbirth.  Of course, prevention is better than cure and we are investigating whether additional supplies of high quality Misoprostol, offered free of charge by Life for African Mothers (, are needed at Chitambo Hospital.

However, doctors are certain that, meantime, the Life Wraps will save lives. 

It has been an interesting 'round the world' tour to find the suppliers of the garments but they have been tracked to  a company called Blue Fuzion, based in Hong Kong.  Assuming reasonable shipping costs, we hope that the garments will soon be winging their way to Chitambo.  In the words of lady doctor-in-charge, Dr. Telo Siame: 'That would be awesome!'

Thank you everyone who has given their support on this.

Here are a few photos from the fundraising events:

  • Scottish Government 10th Anniversary of International Development Celebrations (7th November 2015)
 Julie talked about her book, 'Looking for Mrs. Livingstone', in aid of Friends of Chitambo.  The audience dug in their pockets and apparently this talk attracted more donations than any other in the programme of events.

Friends of Chitambo Patron, Julie Davidson, author and journalist, peaks at the
Scottish Government 10th Anniversary of International Development celebrations, Edinburgh, 7th November 2015

Celebratory music!
  • Hil's Edinburgh Quiz Night (3rd December 2015) 
 Hilary Wardle, Friends of Chitambo, organised this highly successful event.  Around 50 people turned out, despite the deep snow and torrential rain.  Amongst other wonderful raffle prizes, was this African hamper, in a basket straight from Chitambo, stuffed with African goodies (Red Bush tea, Kasama coffee, Zambian place mats, etc.).

Raffle prizes


During the evening, we sent the WhatApp wave (below) to Chitambo, along with a voice over, and received thank you messages in reply.  Technology is indeed a wonderful thing!

Quiz night goers give Chitambo a WhatsApp wave

  • Penicuik Christmas Street Fair (5th December 2015)
Just 2 days after the Quiz Night, we held our annual stall at the Peniuik Christmas Street Fair.  Again the weather was atrocious but people turned out in their droves and bought masses of raffle tickets as well as playing the Tombola, organised by Trustees Margaret and Gillian.

Raffle ticket sales were boosted by help from Duncan (pictured)
, grandson of our Honorary President Janet Knox.  Duncan was visiting from Australia and put his excellent sales skills to work!

As usual, Penicuik Mayos (Mothers) Margaret and Gillian, did the lions share of the work, including providing vast quantities of home baking and other goods for the cause.

Supersalesman Duncan

Janet and Margaret preside over
our stall

Trusty Trustees, Margaret and Gillian, preside over the Friends of Chitambo
stall at the Penicuik Christmas Street Fair


 Thank you to EVERYONE who has contributed.
You are making a real difference