Saturday, 23 August 2014

Raise a glass?

Not really! But we could raise several hundred pairs of reading glasses which have been donated to GOES - some by Boot's Optician in Warrington (thanks, Steph) and more by Stuart, a friend in Blackpool on his way home yesterday. We had to clear the spare room because our daughter arrived to stay for a few days and her bed was occupied by three suitcases and twenty plastic bags full of books, medical supplies and reading glasses ...and the T-shirts and caps Thomas Cook donated.
In the meantime we've sent help for a roof repair, re-stocked a clinic's medical cupboard, paid for a scan of a pregnant lady (it's a boy). Thanks to all of you for your support - The Gambia's a great place to visit!

Monday, 18 August 2014

Not Good News!

First, the good news: Boot's Optician presented me with a huge bag full of reading glasses today; Stuart has some more which we hope to collect on Friday.
Now: a sad message from Thomas Cook - no free extra luggage allowance on the flight out when we next go to The Gambia! They have been so good over the last few years that we had, stupidly, come to expect it. We could, of course, buy an extra allowance but we try to spend as little as possible here because the money buys so much more for people there!
We will of course cut our own luggage to the bone but we do need the odd pair of clean pants (and a heap of medication too!)
Thinking caps on ...

PS - if lots of you bought lots of the 'Malinding' series of ebooks for Kindle we promise to put that money towards extra luggage ... just a thought!

Saturday, 9 August 2014

Please leave your name and 'phone number!

Recently we've received several messages on our home answer 'phone from people who sound very distressed, asking for help From GOES. Our 'phone does not list callers' numbers if you're calling from abroad. Sometimes we can recognise a voice but because my hearing isn't perfect this doesn't happen often.
 Please, as the answerphone message states, leave your name and number, slowly and clearly. We had a call from a lady last night. She sounded very upset, but we have no way of getting back to her.

Friday, 1 August 2014

How it works.

How does GOES work, I hear you ask.
Well, something like this. Let's suppose that K, our local representative, visits a village clinic and finds that they are running short of medical supplies (not unusual). K sends me a text.
It so happens that P, a neighbour of mine, manages to sell a bike bag, which I'd forgotten about, and gives me the proceeds. On the same day, H, who was running a course we'd hoped to attend but hadn't (due to upset tummies) very kindly refunds the cost of the day we'd missed. We protest that it wasn't her fault but H insists that we take the money and donate it to GOES. Suddenly GOES has the funds to restock a clinic three thousand miles away.
We put the money into GOES bank a/c*, take it out again, deposit it with BAYBA via Barclays' Bank, telephone BAYBA to obtain a code number which we text to K in The Gambia. K visits the local branch of BAYBA, collects the money and takes it to the clinic and hands it over to M, the nurse in charge, who then shops for the urgently needed supplies. All sorted within 24 hours.
K keeps a copy of the receipts to show us when we return to visit the village - hopefully in December.
All money donated to GOES goes to GOES! There is no deduction of any sort for 'expenses' of any kind.

* so we can show the 'footprint' of the money if needs be.