Apr 16, 2010, 4:42 PM
The community of Latriya village in Kombo North District of West Coast Region, in collaboration with the health post and their sponsors from Holland, at the weekend opened a newly built male ward at the health post.
The construction of the ward was sponsored by Henk Hendriks and Herbart Damen through their Foundation Hands Together for The Gambia.
The rationale behind the construction of the ward was to complement the effort of the government in bringing quality health service delivery at the doorstep of every citizen.
Speaking at the official opening, the local coordinator in The Gambia, Alansan Jah, expressed appreciation with their friends in Holland for the support to the community in uplifting their welfare and reducing their burden.
He said the inauguration of a new ward is another milestone in the history of Latriya village, in the sense that the village in the past years, lack adequate water, a health post, good road, school, and other social amenities. Thanks to Henk Hendrik and Herbert Damen through their foundation Hands Together for The Gambia, Latriya has today been blessed with most of these social amenities.
"This is a pride to the community of Latriya and a big achievement in the history of the village," Mr Jah said. He advised the community of Latriya village to see the health post as theirs and take good care of it. "Everybody has a role to play in the sustainability of this health post," he added.
Mr Jah also used the occasion to commend his staff for being committed, loyal, and dedicated to the work at the health post.
Speaking at the inauguration on behalf of the government, Sulayman Badjie, senior health officer at Jammeh Foundation for Peace, expressed delight about the contribution of the donors to the development of the community. He added that building health posts is all geared towards improving the health service delivery system. Therefore constructing a male ward in Latriya village health post will have a positive impact on the society, he says.
Mr Badjie added that Hands Together for The Gambia has been closely working with Jammeh Foundation For Peace over the years with the aim of boosting the health sector in the country.
He also told the community of Latriya that the importance of having a health post cannot be overemphasized, adding that there cannot be any meaningful development in the absence of health; therefore achieving healthy living should be the first priority in life.
For his part, the Alkalo of Latriya Village, Burama Darboe, expressed similar sentiments, as the previous speakers and thanked the donors for investing in his village.
Mr Darboe described the local coordinator as a patriotic Gambian, for encouraging donors to help his village.
The support being rendered by the foundation to his village is a big boost to the entire community of Latriya and its catchment areas, the alkalo said.
Mr Darboe added that the health post is here to help not only the community of Latriya village but also surrounding villages. "Therefore, it is a collective responsibility in sustaining this health post," he added, while thanking the donors and calling on them to render more support to the health sector.
In his official inaugural speech , the National Assembly Member for Kombo North, Hon Adama Cham, highlighted the development made so far in Latriya village by the donors through Hands Together for the Gambia.
He spoke on the importance of health services while noting that the opening of the ward will have positive impact on the society, particularly on the community of Latriya and its catchment areas. He then used the occasion to encourage the community of Latriya to be united.
Speaking on the occasion, Buba Sanyang, the nurse in charge of Latriya Health Post, said: "This is part of another development in the current administration of the Gambian Leader."
He then used the occasion to thank the president for giving them access to operate in Latriya village.
Mr Sanyang described the ward as very important "as it will help them a lot during the raining season".
He also advised the community of Latriya to work hand in glove with his staff for the smooth running of the health post.
Speaking on behalf of the donors, the chairman of the foundation, Herbert Damen, said he was delighted at the warm welcome accorded them by the community of Latriya.
He then challenged the community to take ownership of the health post for its sustainability.