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July 2012 Report - Building work at Acheru nearing completion and we look forward to developing our work in northern Uganda. Tickets are now available for Belfast City Hall event on 15th September.
Most of the building work is nearing completion. There is still work to do on water tanks etc, but the ‘development’ phase of the work will soon be finished. There is still potential to build more in future, perhaps with a partner organisation, but we will soon have all the buildings we planned finished and in use. I am still amazed at how quickly it has all taken place; the staff ensure it is all fully used, with the maximum number of children treated.
From now on our efforts will centre on reaching as many children as possible, with particular emphasis on northern Uganda. I have seen details of some recent cases; all those children brought from the north have been desperately in need of our help, some having endured years of suffering. So far this year, Acheru has averaged 10 inpatients from the north, but we now have more beds so that can increase. We are looking at how this can be achieved. One way would be a partnership with Minakulu Health Centre near Gulu, where we presently run clinics. Much more could be done if we placed our own Acheru workers there, and we are looking at all the implications of this. There will be significantly increased costs, but donors give us money in the expectation that we will treat children who are in great need and this could be the most cost effective way to do this. We are working towards a proposal for development in the north, looking particularly at how partnerships with others might spread the load. I hope I can give you more news on this soon. When we started clinic runs to the north we thought it would be for a short time only till other organisations got their work under way, but that is not happening and we seem to be the only ones providing an effective service there.
We had a big ‘Africare’ event in Kilrea recently when Solomon, a former Besaniya boy who helped in Cherub, trained as a nurse, and is now studying here, married Laura, one of our committee members who has gone to Uganda as a volunteer on a number of occasions. The wedding was a very enjoyable event, with many guests having previously worked in Uganda and in effect forming part of Solomon’s family.
Don’t forget about the big event in Belfast City Hall on 15th September. We hope that on the night we will be in a position to announce details of the next phase of the work of Acheru. Tickets are available from Africare at 02893 362197, Etta Halliday (until 19th August) at 07780 962 697 or Linda Allen at 0797 1065 641. We want it to be an enjoyable evening, but also one which helps move the work of Acheru forward.
Brian Dorman

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