Thrown in at the deep end
One of the tasks my brother had last year, was to take photos which would show before and after shots of operations. This was in order for donors to see what money was being spent on, also for use with fundraising; he would be doing the same this year (as well as helping out with their computer systems).
I did not expect to be thrown in quite so far at the deep end, but on the first day at the hospital, I found myself in the operating theatre watching: tumours removed; hands cut open then receiving skin grafts; and pus drained. Intense #didntFaint.
The hospital is very different to what I am used to. It is a series of small, one storey buildings in an open grassy area, and chickens, dogs and other animals have free roam of the grounds. Ward standards are also a stark contrast to western ward standards and initially I wasn’t quite sure how to respond. Despite all this, the hospital is still doing an amazing job and we have seen many people passing through with incredible results. There is still a lot to be done though.
During our first week, a team of surgeons were there on a several week long, yearly charity visit, and it was incredible getting to see a few specialist operations being carried out. They are always looking for more volunteers or new surgeons wanting to gain more experience. Get in touch if you are interested, website: http://interplastuk.org
The local doctors do an incredible job as well. The first man in the pictures below is called Robert. He makes prosthetic legs for people. Last year, my brother met a girl for whom two legs were made; after this, she was even able to run again. The second doctor works in the children’s ward and when we met him, he was working to help a child suffering from malnutrition.
My main job here is to help out with the hospital website; the target audiences being both investors and locals (many people don’t have personal computers, but use internet cafés). As a web developer, it was initially very difficult to get started with the work I needed to do, as there is no broadband, also power-cuts and the internet dropping out are frequent. After a lot of frustration, I decided to buy a month plan sim-card with a lot of data – and use my phone as a portable wifi spot, so I feel like the ball is starting to roll now.
Whilst here, I will also be creating a small website for the local farm, which sells goods and services to locals; with profits going towards the hospital. The long term goal being for more hospital finance to come from the farm’s revenue.