We Are Randox | Randox raises £4464 for local charity Hope 365 to build ‘Hope Homes’ in Ethiopia
A care centre in Ethiopia which looks after rescued street children has expressed its gratitude after thousands of pounds were raised by global diagnostics firm Randox, which will go towards supplying new furnishings for the centre and employing additional staff.
Almost £4,500 was donated in the company‘s annual charity raffle which will go towards improving facilities at the Tesfa Manoriya Bota Centre which is run by the Northern Ireland charity Hope 365. It was established 18 months ago by Chief Executive, Michael Holmes who has an extensive background working with charity organizations. Before establishing Hope365 Michael spent the last eight years working in Ethiopia to help improve the life of children who were left homeless.
The ‘hope home’, as it’s known locally, offers a new start for street children in Ethiopia who have been living in squalid, unsanitary, dangerous and unhealthy conditions. The Randox raffle donation will fund new furnishings for the centre and support the employment of specially trained staff, counselors and educational experts to develop individual care plans for each child, helping them to look forward to a bright future.
Randox Founder and Managing Director, Dr Peter FitzGerald said;
“We hold an annual raffle every year and donate the proceeds to charity. This year we decided to pick a local charity, Hope 365, which is near our headquarters in Crumlin. When we heard about the great work that Hope 365 were doing for children in Ethiopia we decided that the money would go a long way to improving their lives and wellbeing. The Tesfa Manoriya Bota Centre is really a life-changing place for Street Kids that will not only give them the opportuntiy to learn and develop but give them a whole new lease of life and security for the future. We were thrilled that all our staff were able to raise so much to support this worthy charity.”
Hope 365 Chief Executive, Michael Holmes said;
“This funding will make a huge difference in the lives of the children we work with, many of whom don’t even know what age they are when we meet them. Their parents have died due to either illness or poverty and they are left homeless, sleeping in doorways and drains, with no one to take care of them or protect them. No human being deserves to live like this, especially not a child. Though the charity is only in its infancy, every donation goes directly to the Hope Home and we ultimately aim to provide a home for 26 children in the future at the Hope Home. We want to help them reach their full potential and educational ambitions and where possible, reunite them with their extended family.”
If you would like to get involved with charity fundraising in 2017, please share your ideas with us by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here at Randox we are celebrating our creative and talented work force whose fresh perspectives and world experience help Randox operate on such a global scale.
Recently, Charlie Graham, a member of the Randox Food Diagnostics Marketing team told us about her time spent in Ethiopia, volunteering with Volunteer Service overseas (VSO) as part of the International Citizenship Service (ICS) Programme.
Charlie sat down with us to tell us her story.
“I first heard about the ICS program when I was studying at Glasgow Caledonian University. My friend who was also studying Business Management with Marketing alongside me, had pre-warned me about the intense application process, and although it seemed quite daunting at the time, I have always been interested in volunteer work and international travel so I felt up for the challenge.
To be considered for a place on the program I had to firstly complete an online application. Then if you passed this initial stage you were invited to attend a group interview that took place in London. Here I undertook both group and individual assessments throughout the day that tested my knowledge of international development, conflict resolution and team work skills. Surprisingly, I found the interview process extremely rewarding as there was a strong focus on personal development and feedback. It was also interesting to learn about the possible charities that we could be placed with based on our skill sets.
I was excited when I finally received the news eight weeks later that I been matched with VSO and would be placed in a livelihoods development programme in Addis Ababa. To finalise my place I had to raise £800 that would go towards the work that I would be doing when I arrived in Ethiopia. I decided to host a bake sale in the foyer of Caledonian University and also compete a 5KM run to help raise the money.
As a group, we underwent pre-departure training before our flight from London. Once I landed there was a week of in-country training where I met up with the Ethiopian volunteers that I would be working alongside for the next three months. We also met our new families that we would be staying with throughout the duration of the program.
One of the first projects that I worked on was with the Women’s Income Generating Activity Groups. This Government funded program provided both training and guidance for local women who had received a small loan which enabled them to start up their own business ideas. One memory that has stuck with me from working with this group was the power of knowledge. Almaz, the project leader, highlighted that for many of the women learning how to read and being able to sign their own names was truly empowering and allowed them to become financially independent for the first time in their lives. This really brought home to me how valuable the work of ISC is, and how much I as a volunteer was able to impact the lives of these women by teaching them this simple act.
I also organised community action days during my time in Ethiopia. I visited a rehabilitation centre called Mecadonia that housed 170 people aged between 10 – 94 who are bed ridden or elderly. As this centre runs solely on donations we provided meals and clothing for all the residents. I even got a local newspaper to come and write about the centre to help raise awareness and potentially generate new sponsorship for the future.
One of the residents of Mecadonia was called Addis, he was 26 and was in desperate need of a kidney transplant. He had been suffering from kidney problems for five years and his family could only afford to treat him with traditional remedies – nothing had worked. As his health deteriorated he was unable to live with his family as he needed to attend the hospital for weekly dialysis. The evening that I met him, he was trying to fundraise 1 million birr which is the equivalent of £25,000 to secure a kidney transplant. His story really opened my eyes and put into perspective how blessed we are in the UK to have the NHS. After meeting Addis I felt very fortunate for the health of my family and myself.
During the time I spent in Addis Ababa one of the other projects I worked on was capacity building for a charity called Redeem the Generation which focused on the potential of young people and women. I worked on developing and improving their facilities to ensure they were providing a good service for the local community. One of my biggest achievements during the project was organising ICT training programme for women which was attended by 15 women and several community elders.
The three months I spent in Addis Ababa were truly unforgettable: I learnt a new language, experienced a new culture and made life-long friends. What’s more I got the opportunity to make a tangible difference in the lives of others.
Since my trip I have become a real advocate for international development and female entrepreneurship. My experience has not only helped cement the importance of being a team player but also developed my leadership skills – which has really helped me here at Randox.”
We hope Charlie’s story has inspired you to grab new international opportunities that will help improve the wellbeing of others. Randox is committed to revolutionising healthcare through its diverse and multi-talented team.