Jun 24, 2011, 1:52 PM
A team of philanthropists from Holland led by businessman Bennie Ahlers, donated medical items including an incubator to Brikama Major Health Centre in West Coast Region.
The items worth thousands of dalasis were presented on Monday at a ceremony held at the health centre.
According to officials the gesture is part of their humanitarian support in complementing efforts of the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, in providing quality health service delivery for the people of the region and the catchment areas.
Speaking at the ceremony, Hon. Abdou Kolley, National Assembly member for Kombo South district, spoke at length on the importance of health, stating that the government has health on its top agenda of national development priorities.
He commended the donors for complementing government’s efforts in achieving quality health service delivery.
Fabakary Saidykhan, the coordinator of the initiative, said Mr. Bennie Ahlers has been working and supporting poor Gambians for the past ten years.
He said the donor does not only give support to the health, but also in agriculture, education among others.
Highlighting some of the major support provided by Mr. Ahlers and his donors, Saidykhan added that the philanthropists have built a health post in Jarra Jappineh, and two skills centers/workshops for carpentry for youths.
They are currently building a school at Latri Kunda German, supporting a garden in Manduarr, and providing a tailoring workshop for disabled women to learn tailoring skills for their livelihood and self- reliance.
“They also provided football jerseys for 200 football teams, among many other things in the country,” he said.
According to Saidykhan, for about six years now, The Gambia has been receiving containers full of valuable materials through Bennie Ahlers for distribution among the needy.
Mr Ahlers as the head of the delegation started by commending the people of The Gambia for appreciating their gifts, and thanked them for the warm welcome accorded to them.
He said that The Gambia is a nice country, peaceful and the people here are very friendly.
According to him, the initiative came through a Gambian friend based in Holland, and since then they have been visiting The Gambia and providing support to the people of the country in the areas of agriculture, skills development, education, health, among others.
The materials, particularly the incubator, are a gift from a Dutch hospital called Scheperziekenhuis in the city of Emmen, he said.
He urged the beneficiaries to make best use of the donated materials, and used the opportunity to commend his colleagues, particularly Marc and Marek, who are tirelessly supporting him in this work.
Omar Gassama, on behalf of the officer in charge of Brikama Major Health Centre, said the day was very important to the people of the area, as they witnessed yet another magnificent gesture from their friends from Holland.
He commended them for the support and all the donations they have been giving to the people in need.
One Jereba Sanneh who also works in closed contact with the philanthropists and facilitated the delivery of containers from the seaport to Mr Saidykhan, for distribution to the various beneficiaries, hailed his counterparts for their efforts and urge the beneficiaries to properly use the materials donated to them.