NewsPosted by Terence Elliott Sat, July 30, 2011 06:32:56

Former Sunderland MP, Chris Mullin, has agreed to be a patron of the Wear Surma Clinic.

Mr Mullin, who retired from Parliament at the last election, said: “I have long admired the work that Carole has done to help people in one of the poorest parts of the world and I am honoured to be asked to add my name to the project.”

Carole said: I am really delighted. As well as having a long and distinguished career as a Parliamentarian, Chris is also a highly respected journalist and author.

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We are going to Bangladesh!

Forthcoming TripPosted by Terence Elliott Thu, July 28, 2011 13:34:14
On January 22nd 2012, several of us are heading back to Bangladesh. smiley At present, those confirmed and booked are:

Carole and I.

Our friends: Ken Wilkinson (his third visit). Ruth and David Godfrey (first timers). It was David's mam who knitted all the jumpers we took last time.

Also joining us are my nephew Jack and his friend Sam, who are both fresh from University.
Jack and Sam are travelling on to India and Nepal for several weeks after they leave Bangladesh

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Rotary International’s Highest Accolade

Service Above SelfPosted by Terence Elliott Tue, July 26, 2011 15:50:33
In 2010 Carole, a member of Wearside Rotary Club was awarded Rotary International’s highest accolade, the “Service Above Self” Award.

There are more than one and a half million Rotarians worldwide, each performing his/her own unique service. Each Rotarian is an eligible candidate, but only 150 are chosen out of the 1.5 million. Carole’s award was for exemplary humanitarian voluntary service in Bangladesh for the past 18 years.

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Clinic Founder

Carol Elliott MBEPosted by Terence Elliott Tue, July 26, 2011 15:48:49
In 1997, the Clinic founder(Carole Elliott a Sunderland Health Visitor) was awarded the MBE.

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Solar Ovens,

Solar CookingPosted by Terence Elliott Tue, July 26, 2011 15:47:35

Solar Ovens,
During recent visits to the Clinic and village, we became aware of major problems the villagers had trying to cook their food. Villagers traditionally cook on tiny wood fires which are always inside the hut. These wood fires are very smoky. They cause respiratory problems and we have seen terrible burns on children who have fallen into the fire. In addition, we were told that the firewood was expensive and scarce. On return to the UK we made some extensive research and eventually discovered that there was an elegantly simple and cheap solution to what in fact is a major international problem. SOLAR cooking!

A solar oven can be simply made from cardboard and aluminium foil and can cook a meal of fish, lentils, rice etc in less than 2 hours. Solar Cooking is now widely used in Africa, China, India and other sun-rich but fuel-poor countries.

It is estimated that a family in Africa can save more than 70% of its annual fuel spending, with a corresponding reduction in de-forestation. For some reason, solar cooking is not known in Bangladesh. However, by early 2010, we have successfully demonstrated to the villagers that one parabolic mirror solar cooker could provide a cooked meal for 50 school children. We are currently active with this programme.

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Three 6th form students from St Aidans School

July/August 2007 TripPosted by Terence Elliott Tue, July 26, 2011 15:45:38

We returned to Bangladesh in July/August 2007 and three senior students from St Aidan's school came with us

David Cox (now a Medical Student)

Liam Wedderburn (now a Student Pharmacist)

Theo de Vies (now a Student Teacher)

St Aidans School Students’ visit to Bangladesh

Three 6th form students from St Aidans School, Sunderland visited Bangladesh for about four weeks in July and August 2007.

The primary purpose of the trip was to visit the Wear-Surma Clinic, which is located in a remote village in North East Bangladesh.

The Students were accompanied by four adults, 3 of the adults have previously been to Bangladesh (one of the adults is Bangladeshi) and the adults returned to the UK after about two weeks, leaving the Students in the care of friends in Bangladesh.

The climate in Bangladesh at that time of year is Tropical Monsoon and can be very unpredictable. It can swing from very hot and sunny (40c +) to long periods of torrential rain accompanied by high humidity and extensive flooding.

The vagaries of the weather could affect travel plans and our itinery and so we had contingency plans in place. We did not anticipate that the problems would be great in the towns, but special arrangements were made for the stay in the village, where conditions are primitive and access difficult even in fine weather.

The Students were given advice about appropriate clothing and accoutrements. This included some emergency rations for the 7 days in the village if the local market became inaccessible.

The floods generate a large number of “creepy crawlies” ie snakes, cockroaches and lizards etc. not generally of concern, except to the squeamish. However, there are real risks. This a mosquito area and all must take advice from their GP about prophylaxis for malaria and inoculations against other local diseases. The Clinic doctor was on hand to deal with any emergency while in the village.

A Risk Assessment was completed between the Students and the school.

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