Hamlin Fistula UK

Exclusively supporting the Addis Ababa Fistula Hospital in Ethiopia

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Golden Jubilee Celebrations

At the end of May 1959, Drs Reg and Catherine Hamlin arrived in Addis Ababa to address the problem of maternal health in Ethiopia.  (see Home Page).  It didn't take long to realise how serious the issues were and Dr Reg told his wife that they were there to "light a candle for Africa".  Fifty years later, the candle burns brightly indeed and the progress is truly heart-warming.  During the first week of June 2009, Partners from around the world on whom the Hospital depends for support gathered in Addis to celebrate the wonderful occasion of the Hamlins' fifty years in Ethiopia. 

The Celebrations were held at Desta Mender, Joy Village, where former patients of the hospital looked after all the guests with coffee and lunch over the two days of celebrations.


Cake made for the celebrations

Catherine receiving Ethiopia's highest award from the Minister for Health

Morning coffee before the speeches

Catherine greeting some of the UK Trustees



The Patriarch of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church giving his address

The Juniper Cafe was officially opened at the Golden Jubilee.  They were very pleased to receive a gift of lovely new tea towels


Coffee being prepared for the guests in the traditional Ethiopian manner - here we see the beans being roasted

Catherine with a few of her many very valued and long-serving staff members 

Lighting a candle for Africa - the Midwifery students lead the way

Catherine receiving a gift from the UK Trust - a cross fashioned out of the wood from a former pew in the Quinton Methodist ChurchThe Orthodox Ethiopian Cross with Catherine's newly received traditional western Christian cross Mark Bennett, CEO of the Hospital opening the Saturday morning services - the final event of our Celebrations


Most recently, the original aim of the Hamlins has finally come to fruition - the establishment of a midwifery school.  At last, there is the possibility to move from simply trying to keep up with the many fistula patients to the prevention of the injury occurring.  One of the main attractions of the Golden Jubilee was the official opening of the Hamlin College of Midwifery, although it was actuallly the end of their second year of operation.  See our page on the progress of the School.



This site was last updated 07/09/14