A generous donation from partner church members has funded the purchase and installation of new laboratory equipment for Mercy Hospital. The equipment, which was dedicated last week, will allow the hospital to provide more accurate and timely diagnoses for patients. The new equipment includes machines such as a biochemistry machine, urine analyzer, and blood analyzer, allowing for more sophisticated diagnosis of disease conditions. There is no other hospital in the Bo region that provides this level of testing, meaning patients previously had to travel to Freetown or even Ghana or Liberia to get these tests. The donation for the funding of this equipment is a significant boost for Mercy Hospital. The new equipment will help the hospital to provide better care for its patients and to attract more patients from the surrounding area.
A dedication ceremony was held in August to mark the arrival of the new laboratory equipment. The ceremony was attended by representatives from the Bo medical community, Mercy Hospital, and the local community. The dedication ceremony was a heartwarming event that celebrated the power of community and the importance of giving back. The new laboratory equipment will make a real difference in the lives of patients at Mercy Hospital.
The Transition, Coaching, and Mentoring (TCM) department of the CRC recently partnered with the Maria Charity Foundation to help with family tracing. The Maria Charity Foundation is an organization in Sierra Leone dedicated to helping children who have dropped out of school and are living on the street. They were operating an orphanage with 15 children in its facility, but after attending the TCM's Rising Tides and CSI training here in Bo, they requested a one on one training on family tracing. The purpose of the training, which was done in June, was to acquire knowledge and strategies used in conducting family tracing as this is the next step of intervention in their program and how to adequately process and use the information for family reunification. Then, this July, the TCM went with Maria Charity Foundation staff to do their first tracing efforts.
Family tracing is the process of locating families with the goal of reuniting children and placing them back in their families of origin. Once a family is traced, an assessment is done in the home and in the community to determine if it will be a safe and healthy environment for the child. Then the work can begin of preparing the child for reintegration into the family. Family tracing is an important part of the CRC's work, as many children are separated from their parents and living on the street or in institutions. The CRC has gained a lot of expertise in family tracing, and now is able to teach other organizations how to do this.
On July 15, the TCM Department worked with the Maria Charity Foundation to identify families of 2 children in their program. Moving from one village to the next, a lot of data was collected on the family of the child. In some cases, the exact location of the child's family was not known but a lot of contacts were made to community stakeholders for more information on the location of the family. The social workers from Maria Charity Foundation learned a lot from the TCM team and requested for more training in family tracing.
Filming on the documentary continued in July with the crew heading to Sierra Leone for two packed weeks that included interviews with CRC staff, families and a microfinance recipient with a flourishing tailoring business. We captured the stories of the staff and caregivers at Princess Promise, an organizational client of the CRC's Transition Coaching and Mentoring Department - who shared their struggles to transition their model and get all of their girls back home to families. We interviewed staff at the Child and Family Permanency Services - an organization CRC and HCW work closely with in Wellington. We traveled to Fengehun to watch George and David talk with CRC families there (and fly the drone over the village, to the delight of the people)! We got footage of David and George traveling to case management visits on their motorbikes, and we visited Old Wharf to speak with families supported by CFPS. We even got footage of our stars, David and George, at home with their own families.
Stay tuned as we continue to put the story of "Firmly Rooted" (our new working title) together through 2024. Soon, we'll be able to share a film trailer we'll be showing at the Christian Alliance for Orphans Summit in late September.....
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