In her efforts to reduce the death rate of women and children, the First Lady, Mrs. Sia Nyama Koroma, on Saturday, August 4 this year, donated medical equipment, baby packs and solar lights to the Koidu Government Hospital in Kono.
Handing over the equipment, the First Lady said that she is complimenting government’s work in the health and education sectors.
She stressed that the free health care initiative is a big chain tied to the feet of government which she said must be supported and maintained by all Sierra Leoneans to make maternal and infant mortality a problem of the past.
Mrs. Koroma observed that the death of a child at an early age and that of a woman in childbirth are both disasters to the community and the nation as a whole, maintaining that to reverse this ugly trend she has decided to commit her energy and resources to the fight for women and children to have the opportunity to live.
The First Lady appealed to pregnant women to always visit the hospital for safe delivery and to lactating mothers to exclusively breast feed their babies and take them to the hospital for treatment.
She said that as a mother and a trained Nurse, her Women Initiative for Safer Health (WISH) project was formed to help fight against maternal and infant mortality in the country.
Mrs. Koroma warned teenagers against early pregnancy and early marriage and urged them to make education their priority and to join family planning to enable them live healthy lives and planned families.
Receiving the items, Dr. Ibrahim Kargbo-Labour thanked the First Lady for what he referred to as a timely intervention, assuring her that the items will be used for their intended purposes.
In her remarks, Matron Zainab Kamara commended Mrs. Koroma for the medical equipment especially the surgical kits and solar lights which she said they were in dire need of. She explained that these lights will help them in carrying out emergency Caesarean operations at night as the hospital is without electricity.
She explained that since their generator broke down, they have been using Chinese lamps to do operations.
In her comments, one of the beneficiaries, Mrs. Hawa Kabbah, thanked the First Lady for her gesture, maintaining that the donation will save the women and children from dying unnecessarily.
She testified that in her first pregnancy she delivered at home because she could not pay the hospital bill, but that with the free health care, she had her second delivery in a hospital without paying any money.
The items donated include baby packs, small and big towels, surgical kits, feto stethoscopes, plasters, solar lights, theater kits, bed linens and mackintoshes among others.
She also made similar donations in Tombodu, Kamara Chiefdom where she also donated learning materials and seventy bags of cement towards the construction of an additional classroom of the Ahmidiyya Muslim Secondary School. She also presented ten bags of rice and ten million Leones to the five Sections in the Kamara Chiefdom.
The First Lady is also currently rehabilitating the Mattru Jong UBC Hospital, South of the country.