Blood Donation Drive

Blood Donation Drive

As part of activities for the Caritas@5 Anniversary celebration commencing next week, a  Blood Donation Drive will be carried out in Abuja in collaboration with the National Blood Transfusion Service (NBTS).

The three-day exercise will commence daily by  9 oclock in the morning and close by 4 PM in the evening and will last from 7th to 9th October, 2015. The venue of the exercise is the premises of the Catholic Secretariat of Nigeria which also hosts the country office of Caritas Nigeria.

According to the  coordinator of the drive, Alexandria Ogaga, the exercise is aimed at  imbibing among Nigerians a culture of regular blood donation to save lives as well as mobilize massive donation of blood into the NBTS blood bank in support of patients in dire health emergencies at the various healthcare facilities in the Federal Capital Territory.

The drive will be targeting staff of the organization, residents of Abuja along the Durumi/Area 1 Garki axis as well-meaning Nigerians in other parts of the city.

 

 

CCFN Supports Partner to develop Strategic Plan

Caritas Nigeria recently suppported one of its partners, St Gerard’s Catholic Hospital, Kaduna, to develop their five-year Strategic Plan.

A cross-section of key staff of St Gerard’s hospital at the 3-day event

Members of Caritas Nigeria technical team that facilitated the workshop

‘Hands Up for HIV Prevention’ on World AIDS Day in Namu

The 2016 World AIDS Day (1st December) will remain a memorable day for Namu Community, in Plateau state as Caritas Nigeria in collaboration with St. Virgilius Catholic Hospital, Namu, marked it in a very unique and impactful way.

 

It was double fortune as the date coincided with a technical assistance visit from Caritas Nigeria project team to St. Virgillus Namu, one of her key partner facilities in Plateau state. And in line with this year’s World AIDS Day theme: ‘Hands up for HIV prevention’, it was truly ‘Hands Up’ affair all across Namu town.

The celebration kicked off with visiting Caritas Nigeria team, dressed in their resplendent red, blue and white branded T-shirts joining with staff of the hospital to have an exciting photo session where they all held their hands up to display various HIV prevention messages boldly written on their palms.  Among the messages were ‘Sex Education’, ‘Equal Access’, Gender Equality,’ ‘Social Protection’, ‘Zero discrimination’ etc.

After the photo session, both teams launched a mini awareness campaign to nearby communities around the hospital. The focus was on HIV/AIDS prevention, and testing services available at the hospital. Caritas Nigeria’s Community services expert, Mr. Adelaja went further to conduct interviews with some of the locals to sample their opinions on issues surrounding HIV/AIDS, its prevention and particularly the problem of discrimination. The initial skepticism and curiosity that greeted him later turned into open acceptance and participation when they understood what the exercise was about and they readily subjected themselves to be interviewed. Majority of those interviewed had some knowledge of HIV/AIDS and could site at least one method of preventing transmission. A few beautiful placards were designed with similar messages and were carried around by the staff.

St. Virgilius Namu is a missionary hospital run by the Catholic Church in Nigeria. The facility is administered by Rev. Sr. Martin de Porres, who with her team of dedicated and committed staff offer among other services, HIV/AIDS comprehensive care and treatment services to over 700 clients. The hospital is currently the only facility offering such services to the numerous communities around the area. Over the years, the number of clients placed on Antiretroviral Therapy (ART) has increased steadily due to the determination of staff of the hospital to go the extra mile in their bid to get more HIV positive clients from among the communities placed on ARVs.

Overall, it was a very uplifting experience for the team as the efforts impacted positively on the community, especially those living with HIV/AIDS.

Report and pictures courtesy of Lawrencia Agur, Pharmacy and Logistics Advisor, Caritas Nigeria

 

 

 

Caritas Nigeria marks Feast of St. Bakhita

Caritas Nigeria marked the feast of St. Barkhita, Patron saint of victims of human Trafficking and those who fight to combat it, with special activities in different parts of the country.

At St. Gabriel’s Chaplaincy Durumi, Abuja, domicile of the Catholic Secretariat of Nigeria and its allied agencies, the afternoon mass was well attended by staff of the Secretariat and members of the catholic community in the neighbourhood.

 

Caritas Nigeria Executive Secretary, Rev. Fr. Evaristus Bassey delivered a very touching homily that expounded the life and virtues of Josephine Margaret Barkhita, an African from Sudan who suffered the travails of child abduction and sale into slavery and an eventual conversion into Christianity in Italy where she died as a Catholic nun. During the mass, a special intercessory prayer composed to mark the annual event was recited by all and afterwards, a set of candles were lit at the altar by selected members of the community.

In Benin City, Edo State, the base of the Anti-human trafficking program, Caritas Nigeria collaborated with COSUDOW (Committee for the Support of the Dignity of Women), JDPC Benin and the parish JDPC of St Paul’s Catholic Church. Activities began with intercessory prayers and a candle light procession from the church to the King’s Square, the heart of the town.

With over 70 persons in attendance and adequate police security coverage, the occasion provided an avenue to raise awareness on human trafficking as well as enlighten the public on the bitter reality of life in Europe for those held in captivity over illegal migration and human trafficking-related offences.

The feast of St. Barkhita is commemorated February 8 every year. The date is marked officially in the church as INTERNATIONAL DAY OF PRAYER AND AWARENESS AGAINST HUMAN TRAFFICKING. The institutionalization of this feast day is part of the achievements of Caritas Nigeria who has been in the vanguard in the fight against human trafficking in Africa and beyond. St Barkhita is the Patron Saint of Sudan and is very popular in most African countries including Nigeria.

 

Caritas Nigeria launches eRanger bikes in Benue State

 

Friday, May 12, 2017 will mark an epoch in Benue State as Caritas Nigeria launched a set of eRanger mobile clinic bikes to support its current Community Anti-Retroviral Treatment (cART) program in the state.

The event took place at Winika Hotel, Gboko and witnessed the Benue State Commissioner for Health, Mrs. Cecilia Ojabo playing host  to Caritas Nigeria Team led by its executive secretary/CEO, Rev. Fr. Evaristus Bassey at the end of which she officially commissioned the eRanger bikes in the presence of key stakeholders and beneficiaries of the cART program in the in the state.

 

The ceremony was the climax of a two-day meeting between the Caritas Nigeria program team and members of the cART program which drew together proprietors of community-based pharmacies, patent medicine vendors (PMVs), administrators of Comprehensive Care and Treatment (CCT) sites that serve as hubs to the PMVs, as well as supervisory and roving team  members for the cART program.

 

The eRanger is a special kind of bike designed with the full capacity of a mobile clinic and can reach uncommon terrain where most other vehicles cannot reach. The new set of eRangers is envisioned to strengthen cART program by enabling the cART teams to deliver ART services and commodities to hard-to-reach communities in the state.

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