Warrandyte Neighbourhood House supports Akuem birthing centre, Sudan
In a great example of how easy a local community group can come to the direct aid to another, an outer Melbourne Neighborhood House has come to the rescue of a birthing centre in the tiny village of Akuem in Southern Sudan.
The Warrandyte Neighborhood House today sent directly to the village a Doppler (a machine used to measure foetal heartbeats), and earlier in the year a parcel of other urgently needed items including scissors, blankets, toys, balloons and watches.
Neighborhood House coordinator Karen Throssell says, “It’s a good story about communities rallying together to make something happen.”
“So many people are suspect of aid but with this we were actually able to get a list of things the community really needed and we were able to send the items on the list directly to the people of Akuem.”
The idea to help the tiny village came from an appeal from a local resident, Kussum Wells, who was posted as a midwife to Akuem by Medicines San Frontiers.
It’s been inexpensive and quite easy to send the packages directly to Akuem. The only hitch being when the first package arrived in Sudan it waited in a post office for a couple of months while Kussum recovered from a nasty bout of malaria.
The Neighborhood House sponsored group, the ‘Friends of Akuem’, formed to collect goods from local residents and business for future packages, has grown out of the effort.
Other than a big box of toys, which will be sent to the village in the next few days, Friends of Akuem’s next aim is to give an Akuem local basic training to become a midwife.