The Mzungu Blog: Day 8

Four women in front of a clinic building
Dr. Jan White and colleagues; Mbale, 2016 (photo credit Elizabeth Loconto)

I was awoken by the not so distant sound of chickens and baboons. They were not singing harmoniously. It was 5.15.

I got the feeling that they were working up the energy for a full dawn chorus which was not due for another hour and a quarter. Being so close to the equator the time of sunrise and sunset doesn’t change much throughout the year and neither does the sound of chickens and baboons. So after about an hour I gave up and got up. Today is Sunday and I am clearly not getting a lie in.

After an early breakfast, I had a bit of time before I linked into my church in Chipping Norton using the YouTube link that has been standard practice for many churches since the beginning of COVID. We can chat and send messages to each other as well using WhatsApp. The WiFi ailed about halfway through and then picked up again right at the end.

We had a late lunch where we met up with Dr Jan White the founder of Joy Hospice and the Buwasunguyi clinic. Jan is a GP from Oxfordshire who has been working in Mbale since 1988. There are particular challenges that Jan has that Mildmay may be able to advise or help with but after a couple of hours of chatting it was clear that we needed more information and so made arrangements to visit the medical facilities tomorrow.

After some time catching up with emails, Naggib Chakhane (Mildmay Trustee) and I had the opportunity during the evening to discuss what we had learned from Jan and possible routes forward.

We went to bed with many questions and not enough answers. Hopefully, tomorrow will bring more clarity.

Geoff Coleman

CEO of Mildmay


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