I worked in Nkhoma Hospital in 2010 for eleven and a half months as a junior doctor. During this time, I was responsible for the adult medical wards where I conducted daily ward rounds and saw patients as they were admitted through the outpatient department. My responsibilities also included seeing patients who attended the hospital either acutely unwell or for chronic disease management, giving them initial treatment and triaging them to the most appropriate ward. For a brief period, I worked in an epilepsy clinic in Lilongwe, run by Children of Blessing Trust, providing cover when the usual Doctor was unavailable.

Below left: Sitting outside the laboratory with Jessi Stitt, Volunteer working in Ebeneezer School during 2010.

Above right: Hanging the mosquito nets bought for Female Ward helped by colleagues and visiting Medical Students.

I became aware of Positive Steps and their work in 2010. Jane, who founded the charity, and I met during one of her visits to the hospital that year. During my time in Nkhoma, I was fortunate enough to meet some of the patients whose lives have been significantly changed by the actions and support of Positive Steps, such as Ellen, who has regained some hope and independence through the provision of prosthetics as well as the ongoing care and therapy that is needed in cases like hers. Without the support of Positive Steps, Ellen’s life would have undoubtedly followed a very different course. I also witnessed first-hand the work done through the collaboration of Positive Steps and Africa Burn Relief, bringing in specialist teams to work on victims of significant burns thereby improving the complications sustained, such as painful contractures. Without their work, this would have been impossible to achieve in the setting. The fact that Positive Steps supports individuals such as Ellen, while recognising the importance of training and education, means that the work they do is sustainable and this is crucial for the on-going development of much needed healthcare in the region. These are my reasons for joining their team!

Below left: Returning from an Outreach Clinic with colleagues from Nkhoma Hospital.

Above right: With colleagues from the adult medical wards on my last working day in Nkhoma.