Our final day here in Lusaka gave us the chance to visit a local clinic where they provide testing for pregnant mothers and newborns. We were given a guided tour of the clinic where we show the labour ward and testing areas amongst others. The facilities we were shown were beyond shocking! The clinic supports 100,000 local people, however only has one doctor, with eighty nurses and 19 care assistants! Consequentially some local people of Lusaka have to travel to the city, as they will be more likely to be seen by a doctor. It really is appalling to see a 100,000:1 for patient to doctor ratio, something that would be unimaginable in the UK.
The Clinic itself was very run down and certainly not clean or hygienic. This was a real eye opener and something that I will always remember as It made me appreciate the facilities and the financial support we have in the UK. It was a very humbling experience to see that so many people actually live their day to day lives with so little, where there is no certainty of medical aid.
With this fantastic week coming to a close, all the GRS board members, Skillz coaches and interns gathered at the Kilamanjaro Lodge where we were to have a Braai. A Braai is basically a BBQ, including grilled crocodile on the menu which I can only describe as tasting like a cross between lobster and chicken!
The whole evening was really enjoyable as all parties really interacted throughout the night sharing thoughts and stories about their time with GRS. Towards the end of the evening a presentation was shown to mark the 10 year anniversary of GRS in Zambia. Throughout the photo slide there were tears of joy and laughter as forgotten memories were reignited. Many of the current Skillz coaches have been there from the beginning, 10 years ago so it was great to see the appreciation from everyone for all their hard work and commitment to making change and achieving GRS’s goals in Zambia.
It was an unforgettable trip, experiences that will stay with me for years to come.