Women & Children…our priority in Sierra Leone

mothers and children

Sierra Leone has one of the highest maternal and infant mortality rates in the world. Reducing these mortality rates for women and children is a priority for HealeyIRF.  As a result, providing prenatal and post-natal care is a key component of care throughout the Charity Health Network. 

Pictured above, women await these services at HealeyIRF supported St. Anthony Clinic for the Poor. The clinic, located in Freetown, serves a catchment area of over 39,000. Approximately 800 patients per month are seen at St. Anthony’s, many women seeking care during their pregnancy and later for their children.

Support of medical supplies welcomed by staff

Nurse Bakarr noted that the support from Caritas Freetown and HealeyIRF help, “keep our clinic so clean and the patients are happy to come to this facility, it is clean, healthy and safe because of your help. You can see the bed linens and other supplies at use.”

Further she said that, “being a free of charge facility we do not collet money to be able to pay for high quality materials but with your support we are able to save lives of both mothers and their babies with God’s grace. Thank you for the support.”

Our commitment at HealeyIRF is providing the support necessary to increase access to care. In addition, improving the quality of care available to vulnerable populations is a priority. Working together with healthcare personnel, such as Nurse Bakarr, we know we will be successful.


Our children are our future and one of the basic responsibilities is to care for them in the best and most compassionate manner possible.
-Nelson Mandela

Donation a Cheerful Addition for Children

donation children

 

HealeyIRF feels it’s the little details that bring a sense of home and bright smiles to children’s faces.  At our two Interim Care Centers (ICC) a recent donation from our partner Goods360 of bed linens has added a cheerful addition to their dormitory rooms.

Sister Agatha Kamara, House Mother noted, “The linen makes sleeping an art and joyful.”

Donation of pillows delight children

An earlier delivery of pillows was greeted with great delight.  Can you imagine the joy of having your first pillow?  Summing up the children’s feelings nicely, 11-year old Josephine at our ICC in Kline Town said, “Oh, Sister, I feel like sleeping right now.”

donation children


Sleep, my child, and peace attend thee

All through the night.

–Harold Edwin Boulton

Memunatu’s Story—Shy Now Bold

orphan

Our  In-Country Program Manager, Ishmeal Charles, sent us this recent update on our orphan and vulnerable children program in Sierra Leone.

Message from Charles: The support from the Healey International Relief Foundation (HealeyIRF) to the Interim Care Centers (ICC) has made great difference in the life of the children. It was observed that these children who were very reserved are now bold in both their school and at home. 

Looking back at their individual profiles, some of these children were admitted into the home when they seemed lost in their lives. Most of them had only started going to school when they came into the Interim Care Center.

Today some of these children, who were not able to read, can now read and express themselves very well.

Memunatu makes great progress

Our Star girl for the month is Memunatu Dumbuya, pictured in the middle. Before she was admitted to the Newton ICC she was not able to go to school and could not read or write. But now Memunatu can read well and construct basic English sentences with ease. With the help of the reader textbooks that were provided by the Healey International Relief Foundation her reading skills are improving everyday.  She loves to read!

Shy when she first came to Newton, Memunatu now interacts with the other children in the home and is very open and friendly. The teachers at school now describe Memunatu as bold and outgoing.  Both the teachers and her caregivers at Newton (The children call them their Aunties and Uncles!) say she also loves to help others. The nurturing care, safe environment and educational books and toys provided by the HealeyIRF program has had a very positive impact on Memunatu and her future looks bright.


It Takes A Village to Raise a Child.

-African Proverb

Donated Items Bring Joy During Holiday

Donated Items
Thank you from Sisters for Donated Items

 

Dear HealeyIRF,

May the love, joy and peace of this special Season be with you and all at the Healey International Relief Foundation Headquarters.

It was with great joy that we all received the items you sent. We really appreciate all and are very grateful for everything. The children are extra happy and now go to school looking smarter than ever. What great relief the items have brought us all. Our printer is just amazing, we can now do a whole lot using it, may God almighty bless and richly reward you for all you have been doing for us.

Wishing you A Very Merry Christmas and a Prosperous New Year to come.

Lots of love and hugs from all of us!

Please we are sending some pictures through this mail and more will follow soon.

With prayers,

Bernadette and Agatha

Fatima House Interim Care Center – Freetown, Sierra Leone

December 2016


Joy To The World!


 

Fire at Holy Spirit Hospital

Hospital Holy Spirit

On November 3rd, we received the devastating news that a fire at the Holy Spirit Catholic Hospital in Makeni totally destroyed the Molecular Biology & Immunology Laboratory, Physiotherapy Unit and Drug Store. Luckily, there were no fatalities and many of the other structures, such as; the main hospital and the recently constructed maternity ward, were not touched by the fire.

But the loss, in particular of the Molecular Biology & Immunology Lab, is a great setback to efforts to strengthen the healthcare system following the Ebola epidemic.

Hospital Grows From Small Beginning

Since its inception as a one room clinic in 2002, under Dr. Patrick Turay’s direction, Holy Spirit Catholic Hospital has grown to 70 beds and is a model and groundbreaking private hospital in Sierra Leone. Describing his approach, Dr. Turay notes, “Every day, we try to make things just a little better for the people here. That’s the key — always improving; always moving forward.”

The Molecular Biology and Immunology Laboratory was one of Dr. Turays’ visions in moving forward and creating a better future for those in Sierra Leone. The Ebola virus that infected 14,000 and took nearly 4,000 lives in Sierra Leone, laid bare the healthcare systems inability to properly diagnose deadly viruses. Makeni, where Holy Spirit is located, was one of the “hotspots” for the virus.

Hospital Key In Fight Against Ebola

Understanding that properly identifying the Ebola virus was a key component to defeating the epidemic, Dr. Turay worked with partners in constructing needed structures and acquiring equipment to establish the Laboratory at Holy Spirit. As a result , reports credit this Laboratory, which opened in early 2015, with saving 100,000 lives through improved diagnosis.

But this Laboratory was also important to improving and protecting the health of future generations. With all the necessary equipment to be able to diagnosis emerging viruses and ongoing viruses such as HIV and hepatitis B and hepatitis C virus, the Laboratory was a critical component in efforts to strengthen the healthcare system in Sierra Leone.

In the months ahead we will be working with Holy Spirit Hospital to help them rebuild these needed capabilities.