Do you know that Sierra Leon is among the poorest countries in the world? On 1/11/07 evening I came across a BBC programme by Mr Sorious Samura which indicated Sierra Leone was the second poorest country in the world. The maps of world’s website even show Sierra Leon as the poorest country in the world!!!!
I was very surprised especially since I am married to a Sierra Leonean and was completely unaware of this. I just assumed that after the 10 year war, everything has gone back to normal – I thought the many world wide charitable organisations would have gone there to help put things right.
So on 3/11/07, a Saturday, I decided to follow my husband to launching of a new charity Sierra Leone Health Care Trust by Mr Jimmy Jombla, to hear for myself what was going on. I was moved to tears by the end of his presentation.
Key Facts (from Sierra Leone Health Trust database)
• Sierra Leone currently has the highest maternal and infant mortality rate in the world. A further 194 children out of every 1000 will not see their fifth birthday.
• This nation has also been stratified as the worse and most dangerous place to be pregnant in according to the W.H.O and UNICEF.
• The youngest obstetrician is 50 years old (BBC report on WHO document on Sierra Leone’s Women’s Health) mainly due to brain drain and poor recruitment facilities. Access to healthcare facilities is limited.
• Coronary care services are substandard and sufferers of cardiac conditions aren’t responded to within reasonable time limit in terms of heart attacks.
Mr Jimmy Jombla is a qualified women’s health Practitioner, who had the opportunity of working in Sierra Leone’s health sector. Whilst there, he realised the urgent need to adequately and promptly respond to obstetric emergencies. This was a test of his academic and practical achievements as he adopted major roles in attending to women who were at risk in child bearing. He has worked on a research project on FGM with one of the leading medical practitioner (consultant) of that nation.
He is also currently undertaking a course in obstetric ultrasonography.
Sierra Leone Health Trust hopes to do the following:
• Erect purpose built hospitals/Mother Centres.
• Create a transport link between Mother Centres to ensure quick response is given to women at risk in pregnancies.
• Institutionalise Health promotion activities.
Personally, as a woman, I do not want to perceive pregnancy and child birth as a high risk condition and a possible journey of no return. As a mother, I want to see my children healthy, happy, blobby and well fed all the time. I can’t bear to see them ill. I certainly also want to see them live past the age of 5 and to be all that they can possibly be.
That is why I am deeply moved by Mr Jimmy Jombla’s efforts to make a difference in the plight of these women and children- to help lift some of the daily stress off their shoulders by providing the resources to assure them that pregnancy does not have to lead to death, and that actually their children can live that past childhood.
If you want to assist Mr Jimmy Jombla achieve his vision or want to know more about Sierra Leone Health Trust, please follow this link Sierra Hospitals
Thanks for your time.