Jobe and Marianne Valassi, staff of Thomas Cook Northern Europe (TCNE) have
explained that the tour operator has been helping Gambian hospitals, schools,
Day care centers for children with disabilities and local communities for the
last 25 years.
The company as one of the world’s largest tour operators has been in The Gambia since 1967. Magnus Wikner who was the sport host in Sunwing in 1986 and he is now the chief executive officer of TCNE.
During a recent interview with our reporter, Mr. Jobe said the tour operator in collaboration with Sodersjukhuset, Nacka Sjukhus, and Karolinska Sjukhuset hospitals in Stockholm, Sweden have donated hospital equipment, medicines, beds, ultrasound machines, operation tables and wheelchairs to several hospitals including Bafrow, Bansang, Sukuta, Hart House and Tanka Tanka Psychiatric hospital.
He said Eivor Bjorkman, a former Swedish midwife annually visits The Gambia to train beneficiaries on how to operate some of the equipment.
According to him, TCNE has also been supporting various schools with furniture, school materials, bicycles, computers, sports materials, mobile phones and kitchen equipment among others. “Swedish fashion brand J. Lindeberg, private Swedish and employees of TCNE have also been donating new and used cloths to Gambians every year.”
Last year, Thomas Cook Northern Europe AB in collaboration with several hospitals in Sweden donated hospital equipment to the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare for onward distribution to various public hospitals in the country.
The equipment includes scanning machines, operating beds, wheelchairs, fridges, bicycles, walking sticks, and chairs among others. “Thomas Cook had also donated washing machines to Banjul and Kanifing mortuaries as well as cloths to various communities across the country.”
According to him, this winter, the company opened a brand new hotel Sunprime Tamala Beach and sending more customers to The Gambia from the three Nordic countries; Sweden, Denmark and Finland. “The volume has increased this year by almost 50 percent and next winter we will be adding trips from Norway to The Gambia.”