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Ruth visits Zanzibar to witness positive effect of her donations

 Mike and Ruth wioth mental helath staff and former patiens celebrating World Mental Health Day in Zanzibar
 A mother and her child at Dunga Mental Health Clinic which Mike and Rith Visited
Mike Presenting Bakari Ali Mohammed from SWAZA a local NGO with a laptop donated by ZAMS

A BRONGLAIS mental health nurse has returned from Africa where she distributed the £800 she raised by swimming in the sea off Borth last winter without a wetsuit.
Ruth Jennison, who lives in Llanidloes but works on Bronglais Hospital’s Enlli ward, travelled out to Zanzibar, a Tanzanian island off the east coast of Africa, where she went to offer financial support to the island’s struggling mental health services.
Ruth and former colleague Mike Greenwood’s trip was made possible thanks to Ruth’s swims in the freezing sea off Borth last winter, which helped her raise £800.
The pair travelled out in late September and spent two weeks visiting mental health practitioners and deciding where the money would have the most benefit.
Ruth and Mike decided to purchase medication which helps control epileptic seizures after witnessing a young child suffering the effects of cerebral palsy he developed after contracting meningitis.
“We were lucky to visit an outreach clinic at a village called Dunga, where there were 66 patients seen in just two and a half hours,” Ruth told the Cambrian News.
“The last one was so sad. A little boy – maybe five – was carried through in his dad’s arms. He had epilepsy and his little limbs were clenched. He was blind and unable to walk – he had meningitis when he was tiny, resulting in cerebral palsy.
“His dad wanted some more medication to help him sleep. Unfortunately there was no phenobarbitone to be had. This is an important drug for treating epilepsy.
“Shortage of essential mental health and neurological medication is a huge problem here.
“Fortunately we were able to buy some phenobarbitone and give it to Suleiman, our partner on Zanzibar, to give to patients. This is thanks to the money raised by everyone.”
For more information, follow ZAMHS (Zanzibar Mental Health Shamba) on Facebook, or visit www.zamhs.co.uk

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