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Sharing our profound sympathies with the Royal Family

Hamlin Fistula UK and Hamlin charities around the world are deeply saddened by the news of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s passing and send our profound sympathies to the Royal Family.

Our late Founders Catherine and Reg Hamlin had the honour to meet Queen Elizabeth II on a number of happy occasions, which we look back on below.

Lunch with the Queen

Catherine meets The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh at Government House, Canberra, Australia

In 2011, Dr Catherine Hamlin was among 50 prominent Australians invited by the Governor General of Australia, Dame Quentin Bryce, to take lunch with Queen Elizabeth II and Duke of Edinburgh at Government House, Canberra.

This was an exciting time for Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia, as meeting with Her Majesty helped further spread global awareness on the horrific injury of obstetric fistula, and Catherine’s efforts to eradicate it forever.

The Queen visits Ethiopia in 1965

This however was not the first time that Catherine had met Her Majesty. In 1965, Queen Elizabeth II made a state visit to Ethiopia to award the Order of the British Empire (OBE) to Dr Reg Hamlin.

Queen Elizabeth II awarding Dr Reg Hamlin the OBE in 1965

During Her Majesty’s visit, she toured the Princess Tsehai Hospital in Addis Ababa where Catherine and Reg worked. In an excerpt taken from Catherine’s book, The Hospital by the River, Catherine tells of the momentous occasion when the Queen awarded Reg the OBE:

The Queen and the Duke entered with the British Ambassador, and we all rose and bowed. When Reg went up, the Queen said, ‘I did enjoy my visit yesterday. Thank you for taking me around.’ She was sweet and gracious. We all noticed her lovely blue eyes.”

Dr Catherine Hamlin

Undoubtedly a proud moment for the Hamlin family, thanks to Her Majesty’s recognition, this also greatly increased worldwide recognition of the plight of fistula sufferers and the tireless efforts being undertaken around the world to end fistula, forever.


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