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I am going to work in one of the world's biggest slums
IT is one of the world’s biggest slums where a million people face a desperate daily battle against poverty, hunger, filth and disease.
The notorious Kibera neighbourhood in Nairobi, Kenya, stretches 1.5 square miles where AIDS and malnutrition are rife and 500 people are forced to share each rudimentary latrine amounting to nothing more than a hole in the ground.
This is the destination of a osteopath Emma Wightman who is leaving her Hampshire clinic for a vital outreach mission to improve people’s lives there.
Emma, of the Stockbridge Osteopathic Practice, is travelling to the East African country for the second time as part of a 14-strong team of practitioners from the Divinity Foundation.
She will spend four days running health clinics at Kibera before travelling south to the Amboseli region to set up temporary outdoor clinics under acacia trees for visiting tribes.
Few can afford fees for the local clinics and many leave healthcare to the last minute because they face a constant battle feeding their families.
Open sewers regularly flood in the rainy season swamping people’s homes and beds and AIDS is rife because many women turn to prostitution to make ends meet.
She will draw on her full range of medical experience to treat injuries and illnesses from bad backs and joint pains to gaping wounds, lung and chest infections.
The team will see up to 400 people a day and help everyone from new born babies to pregnant women and the elderly.
The 37-year-old mum of three from King’s Somborne, said: “It’s going to be a big challenge.
“We will be working with people who don’t normally have access to healthcare so we will have to be an osteopath, doctor, nurse and midwife at times.
“It’s very emotional seeing the degree of suffering but the people are so welcoming, kind and thoughtful it really puts it into perspective how lucky we are in this country.
“I hope to do this for many years to come.”
She leaves on Sunday, September 22, and has already raised £1,000 for the trip after completing a one mile sponsored swim at Eton Dorney Lake in Berkshire.
But she is appealing for donations of towels, nappies, toothbrushes, toothpaste, books and toys, plus stethoscopes, dressings, antiseptic wipes and BP cuffs, or cash to buy extra supplies.
- Contact 01264 810028 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to donate.
- Follow her progress on her blog at stockbridgeosteopathicpractice.com
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