For the last few years, schoolchildren all over our town, with Helenswood students at the forefront, have been raising money to help mothers and babies in Hastings Sierra Leone. The infant mortality rate in SL is among the worst in the world, with babies dying from a whole range of illnesses, from anaemia and malaria to diarrhoea and dehydration. The small health centre in the village struggles to provide maternity services for Hastings and the surrounding rural area. It has only one toilet, and not even a cold water supply. Now all that is about to change. Plans have been drawn up, permissions obtained, and Kainde Pearce has organised the villagers into an enthusiastic labour force. The foundations have been finished in record time, and the walls are going up fast. The Link is sending out funds to pay for materials as they are needed, and Sallu Lansana, the dynamic health centre manager, is confident that the extension will be ready in a few months, in spite of the fact that the centre is having to cope with the cholera epidemic that is sweeping Sierra Leone. Sallu and Mohamed Koroma (who is managing the project) express their heartfelt gratitude to all the people of Hastings & St Leonards, especially the children.
The Link urgently needs more money in order to buy and ship out equipment and medication. Please contact Robin (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you can help with a donation or with organising a fundraising event on our behalf. A ‘Hastings & 1066 Country’ calendar for 2014 is being printed at the moment and will be available towards the end of June. Look out for it – it’s really beautiful! Please buy some for your friends and relatives – every penny apart from the cost of production will go towards saving the lives of babies in Hastings SL!