Back to the West Province with the Prime Minister

Life continues to surprise us: Graham has been to Honiara and back since our last blog. He escorted a 10 year old girl with depressed fracture of her skull after her brother landed on her having jumped from a tree into the fresh-water pool. They have great fun swinging and jumping from the overhanging branches, but she was just unlucky to be in the wrong place. He came back on the aeroplane with the Prime Minister, Gordon Darcy Lilo. Jenny was kept busy in maternity with the sick newborn babies, one of which also required transfer to Honiara with probable bowel malformation as it was unable to feed or even to swallow its own saliva.
As the hospital grant has not yet been paid this year and there is no money in the hospital bank accounts, we were grateful for some assistance from the M.P. for transfer costs. Our plight was heard and a local man came to our aid with cash and bags of rice for the staff, whilst the M.P. donated 2 weeks wages for the staff. The good news is that there is a promise of more money from the Ministry of Health which would certainly help us to clear the debt, if it arrives. It remains one of our aims, to leave the hospital debt free by the end of the year! We do now have water in the hospital taps 24 hours a day thanks to the efforts of our Australian Youth Ambassador Jake. Water to the hospital staff remains rationed, but they do all have water tanks. A reliable supply of water to the hospital is another of our ambitions for Helena Goldie – there are many more!

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