After a plea to the public across Glasgow and the West, which resulted in a host of donations – enough to fill a container – the container, full of medical kit, new shoes and toys has now arrived in Buccama in Ethiopia. The initiative was spearheaded by the Ethiopia Medical Project, (EMP), a charity founded by Scottish cousins Jo Middlemiss and Maureen Burnett ten years ago in Glasgow.
The lifesaving delivery was supported by a partnership between EMP and two respected businesses; Clyde based marine engineering experts the Malin Group and international logistics company, Bertling Logistics. Both businesses volunteered the resources needed to send the supplies many miles across land and sea to the gates of the Health Centre in Buccama.
Malin Group and Bertling collaborated to plan and project manage all aspects of the transportation project, ensuring the cargo was safely and securely delivered on time. Rapid Export and Clyde Corrosion Control also provided invaluable support through the wrapping and packing of the resources, and painting of the container, respectively.
Co-founder of EMP Maureen Burnett MBE, from Glasgow, said:
“This delivery has made a massive impact and brought a huge amount of joy to the staff and people supported by the Buccama Health Centre. Jo and I are very grateful to everyone involved for their time, energy and donations.
We set up the charity Ethiopia Medical Project in 2013 after visiting a tiny clinic in rural Ethiopia. My cousin and fellow EMP Co-Founder Jo Middlemiss and I had a short volunteering trip to Buccama, but we were compelled to make a real difference for the long term when we saw the conditions.
The clinic was struggling to cope without enough funding for medical resources and was inundated with women suffering from uterine prolapse and people disabled by a type of elephantiasis called podoconiosis. It is estimated that half of the world’s population of people who suffer from Podoconiosis are in Ethiopia, approximately three million. Both conditions carry a social stigma, with sufferers reporting being ostracised from their families and communities. Yet both can be treated and, in many cases, reversed with simple treatments. In the last decade, donations from EMP have allowed the medical team at the clinic to treat thousands of patients, allowing them to return to their families and live free from pain and suffering. We are so pleased to be able to continue our efforts thanks to the kindness of the teams at Malin and Bertling.
Life has been particularly tough in Ethiopia recently. They are dealing with the cost of living increasing, civil war, plagues of locusts devastating their crops and increasing numbers of attacks by hyenas on children. Like so many other charities, the pandemic affected our fundraising activities, but we have had a little miracle and I think that this exceptional sign of kindness from both organisations demonstrates the impact of what can happen when people come together!”
John Macsween, Managing Director of the Malin Group, said:
“When we were approached by the team at EMP, we knew that we had to help. We were delighted to provide expertise in the transportation of the cargo, and I am proud of our staff for coming forward to support this fantastic charity. It is also a great opportunity to work with one of our trusted clients, Bertling Logistics and build on our existing partnership – and demonstrate how the maritime industry can come together to have a positive impact. And we are so proud of our fellow Glaswegians who helped to fill it!”
More details on how to support the EMP may be found at www.ethiopiamedicalproject.com