Meet the Member: Beatrice Chitambo O'Neill (Bea)

Meet Mrs Beatrice Chitambo O'Neill (Bea):

Beatrice is a genuine Chitambo lady. She trained at the Chitambo School of Nursing between 1976-78. Her father, ba E.K Chitambo, is a famous Chitambo name. He was a primary school teacher at Chitambo in the 1940s, and was married there. Beatrice is likely to be directly related to His Majesty Chief Chitambo, direct descendant of the Chief who hosted the dying Livingstone. This makes Beatrice of royal blood and we are very honoured to have her on board. She currently lives in Leicester, England.

Bea remembers Chitambo Hospital in its hey day, when the wards were always comfortably full and each bed vacated was immediately filled by a new admission. She hears that now the hospital wards are nearly always empty. What has happened, she wonders, to change that? She is also amazed to hear that there are computers and phones at Chitambo now, as the only means of communication then was one telephone at the admin office which anyway was almost always out of service. When there was an emergency on ward for instance, a student had to quite literally leg it to the Doctor’s house who was on call and back. “We were quite young and fit then!”,she says.

Bea also wonders if there is now a garden to serve the hospital. She has happy memories of having her own small vegetable patch beside the student hostel. She recalls how she impressed her fellow students and Tutors with her onions and tomatoes and rape vegetables! How good that there could be a flourishing garden to serve both Hospital and Nursing School. It is fertile land there especially with the Ngalande (stream) running through.

Bea also recalls that the relatives' accommodation, then known as Kabulanda ( A Place Of Sadness) at Chitambo hospital was very poor. She wishes there was a way to support this current 'mothers' shelter' as the relatives' accommodation is now called. Levi Chifwaila supports this idea and advises that there are 2 possible priorities:
 - supplementing relatives' food; (This is where the garden idea could be useful),
 - and improving infrastructure e.g. beds.

This is food for Friends’ thought, to carry forward.

No comments:

Post a Comment