Developing health course
This year's Developing Health Course was filled to capacity, with over 75 people attending across the two weeks. Over ten nationalities were represented, with delegates from as far afield as Kyrgyzstan. One delegate from Uganda found the training came in handy sooner than expected, on his flight home: 'When commencing descent to Entebbe, a loud shout came from the Flight Bursar, “we need doctors urgently at the back”. A member of the crew had collapsed and was shivering, complaining of headache, nausea, slight vomiting and mild chest pain, difficulty in breathing and very anxious. Together with another doctor, I responded and in 20 minutes, he was much better. Dr Giles Cattermole's session on emergency medicine was spot on for me!'
On 24 June, 20 mission agencies set out their stalls for the CMF Mission Fair, held at Oak Hill College in conjunction with the Developing Health Course. Over 70 eager visitors of all ages, nationalities and medical specialities attended, all united by a common interest of working overseas.
The fair is in its fourth year. It has proved an invaluable networking opportunity for healthcare professionals seeking mission opportunities. Last year Friends of Mandritsara Trust needed a new doctor to join their team at the Good News Hospital. To their great delight, their need was met by a doctor attending the fair.
Richard Morrison, who works for Cairdeas International Palliative Trust, noticed the vibrant positive attitude of those attending as they 'actively knocked on doors to discover what God is planning for them'. A big thank you to organisers Ian and Hanna Spillman, Mary Hopper and Vicky Lavy for their hard work.
VIDEO: Tackling Ebola in Sierra Leone
Dr Sam Dunnet was one of several CMF members who bravely travelled to West Africa in 2014 to tackle the Ebola epidemic. Setting off with trepidation but determined in her faith, she arrived in Sierra Leone to work as a Staff Health Manager. In a short video, produced by CMF, Sam speaks of the crisis and desperation she arrived into, and how God carried her through. She says: 'I'm not afraid of dying… just because you're a Christian doesn't mean you're not going to die, but I trusted my life into God's hands that he would look after me.' Do share the video with those you think it would inspire. Available at www.cmf.org.uk
Speaking up for volunteers
CMF member Rachael Pickering spoke at the BMA ARM in June, raising concerns over the difficulties obtaining indemnity for medical volunteers. Her indemnity provider refused to extend her cover while she volunteered in southeast Asian prisons, because the risks were considered 'incalculable'. However, cover would have been provided had she been going to Sierra Leone to help with the Ebola crisis. She described this situation as 'ridiculous'. She added: 'a conversation needs to be had with indemnifiers if the BMA is serious about continuing to promote medical volunteering.'
Partnering with Christian lawyers
CMF appreciates opportunities to work alongside the Lawyers' Christian Fellowship (LCF). LCF shares office space at Johnson House and recently collaborated with CMF in the publication of the booklet Facing Serious Illness. Mark Barrell, CEO of LCF, took the lead in drafting the latest CMF File, titled Hard cases and the law. Our Student Team is keen to encourage LCF as it expands its work among law students, with new workers starting in August.
Helen Sims-Williams (Oxford) from Uganda
Hugh Sims-Williams (Bristol) from Uganda
Helen Shawyer (Sheffield) to Kenya
Monty Barker (q St Andrew's, 1960)
John Breeze (q Aberdeen, 1950)
Hugh Coleridge (q Bart's, 1965)
George Moles (q Belfast, 1950)
Rita Shannon (q 1953)
John Wilkinson (q Edinburgh, 1941)