Update from IHP
March 2020


Dear Rich, 

Since 2005, we’ve focused on serving the global community, especially at times of crisis and disaster. Here in the UK, recent events are making all of us much more aware of our local communities. We recognise the tremendous value and necessity of supporting one another through the COVID-19 pandemic, and everything it may bring. But as we look out for vulnerable family members, friends and neighbours locally, we also remain part of the wider global community. Many vulnerable people still lack basic access to essential medicine and healthcare on a daily basis. As we work together, we can continue to make a big difference to their lives.
Because of you
We are very thankful for your constant support. We need you with us – now – more than ever. Back in December, you joined us to raise an incredible £20,000 to support families and communities in the West Bank and Gaza.
Isam, from Gaza, woke up one day with an ache in his bones. A biopsy and other tests finally provided a definitive diagnosis: osteosarcoma, a type of bone cancer.
It is not an easy thing to be a cancer patient, especially in Gaza, where medicine can be hard to obtain and it is difficult to seek treatment elsewhere. For Isam, news of his diagnosis caused depression: it felt like a death sentence. “Chemotherapy drugs are not always available here,” he explains. “Nor are radiation therapy or immunotherapy. Our struggles are many, financial, moral and physical; above all, the shortages of medicines. You can hardly imagine how painful all of this is for patients.”
Because of you, we have been able to source and send chemotherapy medicines to cancer patients such as Isam. These will allow them to continue with treatment regimes without leaving Gaza.
Learn more

Cyclone Idai
 brought devastation to the lives of millions of people in Mozambique, Malawi and elsewhere. Hundreds of people were killed and millions left in critical need of food, water, sanitation and shelter. The devastation caused significant damage to the health infrastructure which vastly reduced access to essential healthcare services. In the aftermath, cases of cholera and malaria spiked. 
We were extremely grateful for your support of our Cyclone Idai response in Mozambique and Malawi. This helped us to quickly and effectively mobilise emergency medicines, to get them where they were most needed in order to save and change lives.

34-year-old mother Mercy was among those affected. At the time, she was already under strain: pregnant with her fourth child, she had also come down with a bout of malaria.
The cyclone, bringing destruction to many homes, blew so hard one March afternoon that it caused the wall of Mercy’s house to partially collapse. “Luckily no one was inside at the time,” reflects Mercy, whose oldest child is aged 15. The damage rendered the house unfit to live in on one side, but Mercy and her family stayed on the other undamaged side. “My children stopped going to school because of the disaster and were emotionally affected, distressed by what had happened,” she recalls. “I had to deal with all of this while I was pregnant.”
Mercy sought help at a clinic, where she was diagnosed with malaria. She was given treatment, along with paracetamol and an antibiotic (amoxicillin) to help alleviate other health issues. “These helped me feel better within three days,” she told us when we met her in November. 
Importantly, getting better meant Mercy could go back to work to support her children and grandparents: she runs two businesses selling charcoal and doughnuts. “If the drugs had not been available as a donation, it would have been a painful experience because I don’t have enough money to buy them privately, so it would have caused me prolonged suffering.”
Learn more
As we face difficult times in this country, thank you for staying with us to help others who also face difficulty – your support is so vital. Please visit our website or social media platforms to keep up to date with our work.
Adele Paterson - CEO

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