For the third consecutive year, team leader Tors Burke, my daughter Alexia, son Grant and 17 willing and wonderful volunteers helped usher in 10,000 Shambala revellers to the festival site at Kelmarsh Hall. They worked tirelessly from dawn to dusk, strapping wristbands on to the eclectic and colourful mix of revellers, and then selling programs too!
Thanks to the teams sterling efforts, the Shambala Festival organisers have been able to donate a magnificent £800 to the BHA; money that will go directly into extending and upgrading staff accommodation. These renovations form part of our overall staff retention and motivation strategy – an ongoing effort that is helping Bansang Hospital retain 98% of its staff year over year. This success – as far as we know – is unparalleled in Sub-Saharan Africa! The quote below hopefully offers an insight into just how much all these efforts are valued by the staff in Bansang;
We say thank you every day of our lives…I say THANK YOU with the greatest sincerity on behalf of the wonderful staff at the hospital, for your time and commitment in helping us to ensure that our renovation work continues. With comfortable homes comes quality care for the patients.
If you would like to hold a fund raising event to help us with our staff housing renovation program then I would love to support and hear from you.
Just a few short months ago, our charity partners in France donated 6,500 euros to the Bansang Hospital Appeal – a wonderful amount that stood as testament to the hard work they had all put in throughout 2012. What’s all the more remarkable is that they raised this money in a region of France that has never really seen or hosted such charitable events.
We are therefore thrilled to report that the ‘L’Aide Pour L’hopital Bansang de Gambie’ have now raised a further £2,000 for Bansang. Judging by the pictures in the gallery below, there has clearly been a lot of hard work and dedication from Linda Nicholson and the many friends who support her in hosting the various fundraising events. Thank you to all that helped and supported the events – such sizable contributions really do make a tremendous difference to the lives of the people of Bansang.
On a personal note, it really is wonderful to see the story of Bansang being shared far beyond our English borders. Seeing how enthused people are about supporting the hospital really provides so much inspiration for me. Thank you.
If you have read any of my bi-annual newsletters since 2007, you will no doubt have heard of the ‘Scooters in the Sahara’ project. Filmed over the course of one such expedition, the video above gives a great little insight into the trials and tribulations involved in crossing this challenging part of North Africa. More importantly though, it demonstrates just how vital these pizza delivery scooters have become in helping Bansang Hospital reach out to otherwise inaccessible communities throughout Gambia.
My warmest thanks and appreciation go out to all of the teams that have undertaken this journey. You have all seen the hospital that lies at the end of that dusty, long road…and you can be quite assured that gifting such scooters has made a tremendous contribution to its ability to deliver care to those that need it most.
A feature length documentary about this journey is being produced as we speak; so with luck on our side, you may just be watching the whole saga on a television set in the near future!
If you would like to find out more about the Scooters in the Sahara project, please click here.
Foreword from Anita: Although I have had a challenging couple of years on the health front, those years have been made immeasurably easier by the support of countless individuals and organisations — both in the UK, and overseas. It is therefore my great pleasure to be able to introduce the association ‘L’Aide Pour L’hopital Bansang de Gambie’. Set up by my dear friend Linda Nicholson when she emigrated to France with her family, this association has grown tremendously over the years. In her spirited and determined way, Linda has brought Bansang Hospital into the consciousness of many communities that live in their region. I am thrilled that her efforts have been rewarded with so much generosity, and wish the association all the very best for 2013.
“The association ‘L’Aide Pour L’hopital Bansang de Gambie’ have had yet another successful fund raising year here in France – especially considering the financial problems we are all suffering from at the moment. We raised a phenomenal 6,500 Euros for the hospital through a number of fundraising events;
- The Seguinaud annual plant swap (held in April in our local town)
- Two horse racing evenings (hosted by two local bars)
- Various car boot sales (Vide Greniers)
- We also raised an amazing 1,600 euros on the 9th of December at the Marche De Noel (Christmas Market), which was held in the Capitole (village hall) in Abjat-Sur Bandiat.
I would like to take the opportunity to thank my wonderful friends, Jackie and John Ingram, my fantastic family, and the myriad of other incredibly supportive friends who have helped with these events throughout the year. Their efforts have helped drive our organisation forward in ways that we never thought possible. These successes have given me huge encouragement for 2013; and I shall look forward to helping my very special friend Anita with her enduring quest to help the peoples of Gambia”
With the rain and cold weather descending upon us once again, it’s wonderful to be able to report about a very summery fundraising effort. The team above, headed by Tors Burke and my daughter, Alexia, dedicated two days of their time this summer in support of the Bansang Hospital Appeal.
Their job? To wristband 10,000 Shambala Festival revellers, and then sell them programmes (all of which was done in a most impressive array of fancy dress!). They clearly did an exceptional job since the Shambala organisers have rewarded their efforts with an £800 donation to the BHA. This will be going towards our staff accommodation renovations, which forms a significant part of our overall staff retention and motivation project.
Thank you to all that volunteered, and here’s to next year!!
Many thanks to all those from ‘The Results Centre’ who undertook the London 10km Run – and to all those that donated in such a generous fashion. The money will go towards the renovation of staff housing within the hospital grounds. This forms part of our wider staff retention and motivation initiative, which has helped Bansang Hospital reach near 100% staff retention (unprecedented in West Africa).
This latest renovation/extension project will commence in early 2013. We will be documenting the progress via the website.
Thanks again to the team for choosing to run in support of the Bansang Hospital Appeal.
As many of you will know, it has been an incredibly difficult 12 months for Anita. Her usual busy schedule of talks were scuppered by cataract issues, which were then compounded by a far more worrying detached retina. Spending much of 2011 in recovery, Anita feared that her inability to get out and fundraise would have a big impact on all of the BHA’s urgent projects.
It is therefore great to be able to report that despite all of these challenges, you have all rallied around and donated an incredible amount via our new fundraising platform. £7200 raised by 161 people – an average of nearly £44 each. We’re so pleased that people are embracing this new fundraising channel; Virgin Money Giving are the most cost-effective fundraising platform, and reclaim all Giftaid on our behalf! (This saves our poor volunteer accountant, Richard Harvey, from having to laboriously reclaim giftaid!)
The vast majority of these donations have come via the following fundraising pages;
To all the people that contributed to these causes, thank you – they have helped ensure that our latest projects have been able to continue as planned. Now that Anita is almost home, we will be working hard to show you all the great things your contributions are doing out in Bansang!
If you have an adventure or a challenge coming up, and would like to use it as a platform to raise money for the BHA – we would love to hear from you!