Words from the Chair

TCHCharity Trustees’ visit November / December 2018 – Chair’s Report 2018

The Charity celebrated five years of official (HMRC) existence in April and since this time last year, the TCHCharity has held meetings in January, May, September and November and we will be holding our SIXTH AGM in January 2019.

We have made the annual two money transfers to TCHCentre in January and August. The August payment included the inaugural Bendon Bursary payment to successful applicant Chernor Jallow. The Trustees were very impressed with the professionalism of Chernor’s application and also the regular communication concerning his progress and grades! We look forward to catching up with him during our visit to the Centre in December.

The background of change and upheaval in recent years has been a challenge for trustees of the charity but especially for the staff working at the Centre. It would now seem that local Ward members are reviewing a number of services in the Tallinding area which could impact on TCHC. We are ever optimistic that this will lead to a stronger community involvement in the Centre and help to maintain its long- term sustainability. However, the uncertainty puts additional pressures on staff and management at a time when their principal focus is on their patients. We will endeavour to meet with Ward members and community representatives during our November visit to find out their plans. However, on a positive note, we have managed to maintain our support transferring the same level of funding twice a year and in addition inaugurated the Bendon Bursary which should benefit staff members directly.

The key focus for TCHCharity continues to be the sustainability of TCHCentre by improving its infrastructure and financial maintenance. The Trustees are keen to raise standards in line with NGO status and expectations which will certainly shape priorities over the coming year. Our concern is the ongoing development of initiatives within The Gambia and to make the story live in the UK and to encourage donations! At a recent conference in Antwerp (Nov11th 2018), Hon. Ousman Sillah, Chair of Select Comm. on Health, women, children, disaster, refugees and humanitarian relief of the National Assembly, stated that what is required ’is not dependence but solidarity and partnership’ – and we agree with that.

We would like to express a special thank you again to St.John the Baptist RC church in Ilford for its support over the past three years; its regular twice yearly donations secured the annual salary of one nurse which has provided an essential medical lead for the Centre. We would also like to extend our thanks to friends and associates of the charity who have provided invaluable support in a number of initiatives in a continued effort to extend funds.

  • Medicines and medical supplies donated by individuals and local health centres
  • Clare for taking time out of a busy schedule to visit TCHC and provide support and advice to staff at the Centre
  • Alex at Pirrip Press for designing t-shirts, tote bags and other merchandise which will be used to promote the charity and in future activities such as half marathon runs and potential crowdfunding events
  • Mikey from Bristol for such a quick turnaround on a seriously discounted deal
  • Supporters of the ‘save your small change for the Charity’ and birthday donations
  • Lucy for maintaining our supply of leaflets
  • Thomas Cook for generously allocating Charity Baggage Allowance to all Trustees.
  • Last, but not least, Popeye for regular maintenance of http://aidgambia.org.uk

We all value your interest and support and look forward to further progress in 2019!

Marilyn McMenemy – Chair TCHCharity