Through the work that Duncan has done with the Great Football Giveaway the club has formed a relationship with Dr. Rohit Sethi a GP in Cirencester who does volunteer work in Sierra Leone, with his wife, every year. The club made a donation of some kit to be distributed by Dr. Sethi to teams and schools in the area. Enzo recently received the following email of thanks....
Subject: Thanks for the Shirts
I am writing to thank you for the very kind donation of the football strips that you gave me (via Duncan Thomas) for Sierra Leone. I am going out to Madina in a couple of weeks time and the plan is for me to take a complete strip for one of the existing teams in the area - or possibly start a new team in one of the other villages close to where I work. I will make sure that I get suitable pictures for you and give a report on my return. The other kits will go in a container in April (or possibly May). I shall be arranging for those to be distributed to local schools. Football plays a very important part of the trip when doing my voluntary work in Sierra Leone, and so your support is very much appreciated. Thank you Dr Rohit Sethi
Dr. Sethi also provided the following by way of background.......
I am a GP in Cirencester and every year I (and my wife Dr Veronica, a GP in Lechlade) volunteer some of our time to work on medical projects in Sierra Leone.
Sierra Leone is on the West Coast of Africa and is one of the poorest countries in the world that has been ravaged by civil war and internal conflict. Although the war has now ended the country remains ‘very broken’. Most of Sierra Leone still has no running water or electricity and nearly three quarters of the population live on less than one pound a day. The following are some of the health statistics:
• 1 in 4 children will die before their 5th birthday
• Average life expectancy for a man is 48 and for a woman is 50
• A woman has a 1 in 8 chance of dying when pregnant or in child birth
• There are only about 70 doctors for the whole country (Population 6million)
On my last visit in March this year, I took out a Leckhampton Rovers football strip which was used to start a youth team in one of the villages where I was working.
|From Leckhampton Rovers Football Club|
The boys that you see in the picture come from deprived homes and many of them have lost parents and family members as a result of the war. Most young people in Sierra Leone are ‘football mad’ and this provides a healthy distraction to the everyday hardships that they face. As you can see, wearing the Leckhampton Rovers shirts made them very proud and brought a lot of happiness into their lives. It is hoped that this will spur them on to train hard and join a local league!
The medical work that we do is to support the provision of Mobile Health Clinics in this very poor region of Africa. We have also helped to set up a Feeding Centre for malnourished children. You can read more about the projects by going to the website www.helpmadina.org.uk
Dr Rohit Sethi