An historic day for Korle-Blu Neuroscience Foundation was recently marked in the Lower Mainland.
KBNF president, Marj Ratel and her army of volunteers were joined by Liberal MLAs, Mary Polak (Langley) and Ian Paton (Delta South), and Karl Gillies, president and corporate sponsor, Diamond Delivery, to mark a historic day in Korle-Blu’s nearly two decades of service. Two shipping containers loaded with surgical and medical supplies as well as an ambulance donated by Nanaimo-based, LifeSupport Air Medical Services and outfitted to help mothers in labour, will head to West Africa in the coming weeks with shipping costs generously covered by Nicola Wealth.
“There are no other containers like this is all of West Africa,” said Ratel. “As soon as they open the doors, they know they have received something really special.”
While an incredibly exciting time for KBNF, the medical team and thousands of patients in West Africa, there is real concern that the next crucial step needed to make the ambulance a success may not happen. Early in 2020, $50,000 will be critically needed to provide training for West African paramedics and health workers and allow KBNF to continue operate. A new obstetrics curriculum to train Liberian first responders and paramedics has been developed by Graham Williamson of LifeSupport Air Medical Services. He plans to personally instruct the Liberian medic team along with members of his Critical Care Transport Team. However, without donations the essential training required to operate this service is at risk.
To kick off the fundraising effort, Gillies presented Ratel with $5,000 to help KBNF launch this new adventure.
“It is near impossible to realize the need in West Africa for medical help as well as the amazing and life-changing work undertaken by this small charity. We are proud to have been your partner since 2006,” said Gillies.
Polak and Paton were on hand to offer their gratitude for the work that makes real change in people’s lives.
“You know, this wonderful donation is one small step needed to make great change, but you must lie awake at night wondering how you are going to make a dent in such great need. Thank you to all of you for doing this and allowing us to enjoy your company and love that you are giving,” said Paton.