Gran gets a gong for work in Ethiopia

Evening Times - - NEWS -

A GRAN who co-founded a char­ity to sup­port a med­i­cal clinic for women in Ethiopia has been recog­nised for her work, which has helped more than 8000 women.

Mau­reen Bur­nett, from Burn­side, be­gan Ethiopia Med­i­cal Project (EMP) with her cousin Jo Mid­dle­miss, from Kin­ross, af­ter com­ing across the tiny clinic in Buc­cama, South­ern Ethiopia while in the coun­try vol­un­teer­ing.

At the time the cen­tre was in­un­dated with pa­tients suf­fer­ing with se­vere uter­ine pro­lapse and staff were strug­gling to cope with­out enough food or med­i­cal re­sources.

Af­ter hear­ing the ex­pe­ri­ences of pa­tients and see­ing the ded­i­ca­tion of the staff, Mau­reen launched the first ap­peal at home in Scot­land plan­ning to raise enough for a few ba­sics such as mat­tresses.

Now the char­ity aims each year to make a min­i­mum of £25,000 through events and do­na­tions from hun­dreds of peo­ple in Glas­gow and be­yond.

The clinic has ex­panded to be­come the Buc­cama Health Cen­tre with two wards, a lab­o­ra­tory and 22 mem­bers of staff in­clud­ing five qual­i­fied nurses.

Mau­reen, 74, said: “Open­ing the let­ter was such a shock, I hon­estly didn’t be­lieve it.

“I was so des­per­ate to tell some­one but you have to keep it a se­cret and so I’ve been des­per­ate to tell my fam­ily all Christ­mas.

“My co-founder Jo, who is also to re­ceive an MBE, and I feel such grat­i­tude for our ex­pe­ri­ence work­ing in Ethiopia, for be­ing able to get to know th­ese women, who of­ten have lit­tle more than what they stand up in, but yet never com­plain and are so full of joy.”

The char­ity now aims to raise £5 mil­lion to en­able the clinic to be self-sus­tain­ing in the fu­ture.

Mau­reen added: “My big­gest New Year wish is that the char­ity will some­how be dis­cov­ered by some great bene­fac­tor or or­gan­i­sa­tion who wants to help us to con­tinue to sup­port the peo­ple in Ethiopia.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.