Results of our March hunger appeal

Dear Friends – Many thanks to those who contributed to our March appeal so that St. Albert’s Mission Hospital could provide food hampers for the many hunger who come to the hospital gate seeking to do menial tasks for something to eat.

Poor rains caused by climate change, along with inflation and shortages of fertilizer and other materials, have left rural families — most are subsistence farmers — with little food. It’s a bad situation that won’t improve until the next harvest, in early 2025…and then only if the rains are good.

Initially, BHA sent $4,000, enough to fill 420 food hampers.

(The hospital’s food hampers contain corn meal, soya beans, peanut butter, sugar, salt, beans, rice, cooking oil, and a bar of soap. One hamper will provide for a family of five for 10 to 14 days, said Dr. Julia Musariri, Medical Superintendent for St. Albert’s hospital.)

We then reached out to BHA supporters for help. You sent over $2,100, which we wired to the hospital earlier this month (separately, BHA covers the $40 fee for each wire we send, regardless of amount, and we include an additional 2% to help cover the fee St. Albert’s must pay to their Zimbabwe bank).

Thank you once more, BHA contributors!

Women earning food hampers by clearing grass from a field at St. Albert’s.

One final point. I’ve been associated with St. Albert’s hospital since late 2000. During that time, the hospital has accepted donations from outsiders who sponsor orphan children to attend school.

Much of that support has dried up, leaving many young orphans unable to get an education. Recently, BHA received donations specifically to sponsor orphans, 13 at this point.

If you would like to sponsor an orphan’s education at St. Albert’s primary school, the current cost for three terms is $181 ($105, school fees; $41, school uniform; $15, shoes; $20, pencil and paper).

Unfortunately, most children have no food at home and go hungry at school, severely affecting their ability to study. The best solution, said Melania Nyamakuwa, who oversees the orphan program, is to purchase food hampers for the school year, which enables a child to bring a lunch to school. The cost of a food hamper for nine months (a school year) is $234.

Thus, the cost to keep one child in school for three terms and provide lunch is $181 plus $234, or $415 per child. If you would like to keep a child in school, please donate here using Dr. Musariri’s button. Please specify that the donation is for orphan education.

Thank you, everyone, and keep well! …Darrell