Bump It Forward campaign donations start to make an impact

News article 17 Feb 2021
Sister Magombo (left), Lead Nurse and Dr Rachael Burke, PhD researcher and clinician, at Zomba Central Hospital receiving PPE purchased with Bump It Forward donations.

LSTM's Bump It Forward fundraising campaign raised over £100,000 in donations so far, to help protect frontline health workers in Africa. 

The campaign aims to support health workers by raising funds for vital PPE. LSTM launched Bump It Forward on 21 January 2021 in response to a call for help from colleagues in Africa.

Healthcare workers perform the vital role of caring for patients as a second COVID-19 wave has hit many African countries. The pandemic has put fragile health systems under considerable pressure and led to shortages of basic protective equipment which are needed keep healthcare workers safe. This has resulted in high rates of staff sickness at the time when they are needed most.

The Bump It Forward campaign aims to support these health workers by raising funds for vital PPE and basic essentials to protect healthcare workers until a COVID-19 vaccine reaches them.

With the help of more than 1,800 donors, the campaign has now raised over £100,000 and continues to invite public donations.

Karen Brady, Director of Fundraising at LSTM, said: Achieving the £100,000 mark is an incredible achievement. I want to thank everyone who has donated to, or shared, this campaign.The response has given us the confidence to be even more ambitious and that with further support, we can significantly increase our scope and impact.”  

The first tranche of funding has now been transferred to LSTM teams in Kenya, Malawi and Zimbabwe.

In Malawi, donations have been distributed to the Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital and the Zomba Central Hospital, enabling the purchase of reusable gowns, face, and surgical masks. 

Dr Rachael Burke, a PhD researcher and medical doctor in Malawi, said “Zomba Central Hospital is doing a great job, providing quality, safe and dignified care in difficult circumstances.  Like in UK, they have had staff shortages related to staff testing positive for COVID-19 which has made things more difficult. The senior nurses have designed a protocol to make best use of the reusable gowns and use Zomba hospital laundry services. They are very grateful to receive the PPE donation; this is a brilliant adjunct to the PPE from Malawian government and private Malawian donors.”

LSTM is asking people to consider donating £25, the equivalent cost of the COVID-19 vaccine here in the UK, towards the appeal. Although any amount given, no matter how big or small will help save lives.

#BumpItForward is GROWING.  A third COVID-19 wave is impacting many African countries and only a small percentage of the population is vaccinated.  Rapid diagnostic testing and more PPE will help control the spread and protect health workers and communities until the vaccine reaches them. 

 You can help.  Donating the cost of a vaccine (c£25) will cover four tests and help to save lives.