Kate Thomas had been looking to volunteer her nursing and midwifery skills in an overseas project for some time, so when she came upon a well established scheme by the Mt Warning Rotary Club she knew she had found what she was looking for.
“I’m a member of Kiama Rotary, and I know that when Rotary is involved things are organised efficiently to have the biggest impact,” she says.
Kate will be amongst more than 70 volunteer doctors, dentists, opticians, nurses and non medical volunteers who will be going to Kenya for a month in August.
It’s a scheme that has been operating twice a year for over 12 years, with many repeat volunteers. Projects that have been undertaken during the visits include: the setting up of dental clinics at local schools, eye treatment and examinations where the optical team produced prescription spectacles, and specialist HIV/Aids counseling and treatment. A 150 foot-deep water well was also built in the village of Mithini, to put an end to residents having to walk miles each day to haul water from a polluted source.
“There is no public health system in Kenya, and I’m going to be part of a team of nurses doing what we can to help,” she says.
Based in Nairobi, the team will be offering assistance at the women’s prison, the slums on the dump, and the surrounding villages.
The public health work will include reducing the spread of malaria and HIV, family planning and wound care.
“We are all raising funds before we go to provide extra medical care to those who need it,” she says.
With the encouragement of her surfer sons, Kate has organised a gala screening of the film Breath. It is a highly acclaimed adaptation of Tim Winton’s novel about surf, culture and coming of age.
Details: Thursday 3 May, Roxy Cinema, Nowra.
Refreshments at 7pm with screening at 7.45pm.
Tickets $20 through trybooking.com. Go to www.trybooking.com/book/event?eid=366418& or contact Kate on 0418 648102