bace banner

Richard Collier-Keywood

collier-keywood smallI volunteered with BACE for the first time in 2012 in helping to build Favour Nursery School and was really proud of what we accomplished. However, when we were there it became clear that this area has no effective medical care.

As we were working on building the school a young boy about 5 years old was brought to us, he had fallen in a fire and one of his legs was burned so much that it was difficult to separate the charcoal from the fire from the remains of his leg. I spent a couple of hours with Charlotte, a nurse and trustee of BACE, cleaning his foot and leg and treating the absolutely horrendous burns - despite the pain he never once cried - apparently there was no hospital or doctor within miles, and even for such serious injuries there is only limited transportation.

BACE has built a really strong relationship with the local community and elders of the area. Over the last year the trustees decided that their next project is to build and staff a medical centre. It will cater mostly for first aid and malaria treatment but will also provide a clean safe environment for women to give birth which they are currently severely lacking - the infant mortality rate in Gambia is currently high at 75/1000 babies born.

Having seen the situation at close hand I am convinced that this will save lives. I am excited about going back to Bonsa with BACE to assist with the building of the clinic, for what will no doubt be another challenging but extremely rewarding week.

Richard Collier-Keywood