Life of Brian

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An update on the early months of the baby who stars on the cover of the latest Agenda

IWA members who received the a copy of our journal Agenda a few weeks ago will be interested in an update on the cover star, Baby Brian, who was born last September in Mbale, Uganda. His mother died of post-partum haemorrhage (that is, bleeding to death), a condition that can be prevented by administering three tablets which cost 15p each.

Brian latestI have just heard from Hilary Storm, head of the Salem orphanage where Brian is the youngest member. She e-mailed Brian’s latest picture, alongside, taken last week at the inauguration of the Salem School of Nursing. “Brian is healthy and developing normally,” Hilary writes. “He is sturdy, very sociable and interested in everything and everyone! He has many ‘brothers and sisters’ who take interest in him here which has, I think, helped his general development. He remains the youngest here in our Babies Home.”

The Agenda cover story featuring baby Brian is by Cardiff-based nurse Angela Gorman who founded the charity Hope for Grace Kodindo. In less than five years the charity has saved an estimated 13,000 lives by distributing drugs directly to where they are most needed in sub-Saharan Africa. In her article Angela explains how she started the charity and the impact it is having on the ground in Africa.

It is estimated that more than 550,000 women across the world die in pregnancy and childbirth. Many of these deaths would be preventable but for the want of basic, relatively inexpensive drugs.

In her message about baby Brian Hilary Storm also reports on latest developments at the Salem orphanage:

“We’ve just completed a small laundry building and are aspiring to have a heavy duty washing machine. We want our children to learn to wash their clothes in preparation for resettlement, but we also want our house parents to have more time for the children! We have to combine both traditional and modern here.

“At the present time the Children’s Home is entirely funded by sponsors and donors, though some additional funds are realised through the growing of food. We want to find funds to invest in projects that will generate income for the work with children to reduce this dependency, though donors and sponsors will always be a part of the funding mix I’m sure. The apiary is a growing project here. We want to invest in sustainable forestry as Salem has land and trees are badly needed and it is a profitable business.”

John Osmond is Director of the IWA

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