STUDENT MIDWIVES 5K CHALLENGE TO SUPPORT HEALTH CARE IN GAMBIA
Student midwives Laura Cowell and Stephanie Denny are taking on their first 5K challenge together at Supernova London to raise funds to enable them to travel to rural Gambia in June and volunteer for the Wonder Years Centre of Excellence (WYCE) charity.
Now in their final year of their studies at London’s Southbank University, Laura and Steph plan on travelling to The Gambia to spend 2 weeks volunteering at the community health clinic set up by WYCE as part of their midwifery training and to help make a difference to the women and newborns of Madina Salam.
WYCE provide education, healthcare and sustainable livelihoods to enable Gambians to have brighter futures. “WYCE aim to offer a hand up, not just a hand out” Laura explained.
Previously, the health centre had limited resources and primarily focused on community nursing. However, with the help of more volunteers like Laura and Steph, they have been able to visit The Gambia and share the western way of midwifery practice. “This has helped bring more babies safely into the world and support the community with safer births.” The stillbirth and malaria rate has dramatically dropped since the help of WYCE became available for the local community and women no longer have to walk incredibly long distances to the main hospital in the area to safely deliver their babies.
“In our time at the centre we will assist in health clinics and hopefully births in the community as well” Laura explained. “The primary health care clinic was set up by WYCE and provides separate facilities for woman in labour, postnatal care and for outpatients/nurse consultations. Each year, the clinic sees more than 3,000 patients and more than 50 babies are born there” Laura explained.
Laura admits neither her or Steph are regular runners and have found the idea of running 5K is proving a challenge however with the help of a 5K training app and having a friend to support each other they are completing their training gradually. “We’re getting there slowly and using the Couch to 5K app has definitely helped and kept us motivated to train” Laura said.
To support Laura and Steph’s journey to Madina Salam and help make a difference to the health care provided in rural Gambia visit: https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/steph-and-laura-gotogambia