New Sight Ouesso Project: Making Great Advances
New Sight News – November 2019
Wow, what an eventful three months that has been! We are so encouraged, and a little overwhelmed, by how busy we have been since we started our eye services, the first and only one of its kind in the region, in July. And what a difference it is already making to the community! Our Ouesso Pioneers have dived straight in and have already grown into such a great team, with each person shining in their role whether that is medical, administration, IT, teaching, engineering, or just bringing joy and fun by being a child! Read on to find out more.
Nurse training program launched
Our Interim Eye Centre (IEC) is getting busier and busier (see Chart of the number of consultations July-Sept), and we are delighted to make ourselves even busier by launching our nurse training program! Empowering the local community is at the very heart of New Sight. This training is an important component of New Sight Ouesso Project: Our trainees will become the future staff for our new hospital. We have completed the application process for our introductory course. The most enjoyable part was getting to know them at the interviews! Fifteen out of forty-three applicants were selected. Class started on 21 October, and by the end of this year, we will have our first intake of student nurses ready to begin formal training. How exciting is that!
Top marks for the Interim Eye Centre
In order to improve our services and better understand the needs of our community, each patient at the IEC is invited to complete a feedback form. Out of our first 100 completed, 100% described their experience at the eye centre to be a positive one, with a whopping 97% giving it the top rating possible!
As for us, how would we mark our own performance during our first quarter?
• We are happy that we have been able to treat most of the acute eye injuries. We feel very blessed to be able to send some of them onto our former trainees in Impfondo for simple surgery. We are very sad that there were emergencies that we could not treat because our surgical facilities have yet to be built in Ouesso.
• We are pleased that we are successfully diagnosing and treating many eye problems.
• We are also pleased that through our comprehensive examination, we have been able to diagnose additional hidden conditions that were unrelated to the presenting complaint. For instance, one young man came because of troubling allergies. We found that he also incidentally suffered from glaucoma. We are so relieved that we were able to start treatment right away as he would have lost his sight if the problem had remained undetected and the treatment delayed.
We are so mindful that without our centre, most of our patients would not have accessed the right help and could have ended up with much more serious problems. Health care is desperately needed here. We are so glad that we were able to start our services!
New Sight has published its Annual Report
To find out more about what your support has helped us accomplish, you can read our charity’s Annual Report for the year ending April 2019 here.
Construction Site: flooding problem resolved
It is rainy season here! Last month, our site engineers successfully undertook a project to fit new drains to direct water away from the site and the nearby airport. It was no mean feat and they worked incredibly hard under the scorching sun. Indeed, no one ever expects a construction project in rural Africa to be easy! Please pray for our experienced team as they continue to work, amidst all the anticipated difficulties, on this part of the New Sight Ouesso Project.
Get to know our Ouesso Pioneers
A couple of months ago, right before they started their adventure in Ouesso, we spoke to some fantastic members of the Ouesso Pioneers team: Ginny and Jean-Pierre Vandevoorde, and Ruth and Jean-Marc Dunys. Check out their interviews!
Thank you for praying and believing with us! Finally, after 8 years, our amazing teacher Ruth Dunys has arrived. She is so worth the wait as she is literally a dream come true. New Sight Homeschool, in its beautiful newly set-up room in the Ouesso Team Compound, had its grand opening in July. Our little Ouesso Pioneers are learning lots, laughing lots, marvelling lots, and are often heard saying, ‘Auntie Ruth says…’! Without Ruth’s important contribution, parents like us would struggle to serve in our roles. We are so thankful that this essential part of the New Sight Ouesso Project is now up and running! We just love how everyone in New Sight works together to make a difference!
The first family visits from Hong Kong
In July, we enjoyed a wonderful visit from Stephanie, our finance lead and faithful core volunteer from our Hong Kong team, along with her husband John and their children Megan and Max. The whole family enthusiastically threw themselves into a whirlwind of preparation for the opening of our Interim Eye Centre. Their hard work and fabulous company were a great encouragement to us all. Merci mingi! (“thank you very much” in African French)
Fundraising can be fun (and hair-raising!)
A huge thank you to Lydia and Jo from the UK who undertook a sky dive to raise funds for New Sight in August! Talk about going the extra mile (into the sky!). The money you have raised will change lives here in Congo.
Our Ouesso Pioneers team is having fun turning into elves cutting, stitching and sewing a maddening array of colourful African fabric to create beautiful merchandise to sell in the UK and Hong Kong as our small way to help.
Would you like to help fund some bricks, a medical equipment, a couple of pairs of glasses or even a nurse for our life-changing new hospital?
Throwing yourself out of a plane is not for you? (us neither….), but could you bake some cakes, host a meal, do a sponsored walk or sponsored silence?
Do you know any children who would like to get involved in a charity? We have just the thing: Project Two Front Teeth (www.newsightcongo.com/twofrontteeth).
Whatever you can do, we would love to hear from you, support you and cheer you on! We’d like to take this opportunity to thank you for all your encouraging messages and generous support! They truly make all the difference.
Samoutous in North America
The Samoutou family plan to visit North America next summer for the Christian Ophthalmology Society conference. We would love to connect with anyone in the USA and Canada who may be interested in our work, e.g organisations and churches. If you have any contacts or suggestions, please do put us in touch.
Even though we are here in the Congo jungle, a part of us are always in our home countries because of you – our treasured friends and families. As a team, we are praying daily for you and your families as we thank God for you. We do pray individually for you so please do let us know of any prayer requests you may have! Whatever you are facing today, as the Congolese like to say, ‘Bon courage!’
With love from Congo,
Joyce and Henri, with all the Ouesso Pioneers
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