Over 400 residents of Ikot Okop in Okop Ndua Erong, Ibesikpo Asutan Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State and its environs benefitted from the 2-day free medical outreach, Community Health Improvement Programme (CHIP), put together by Wodiong Senie Foundation.
Every year the Foundation embarks on medical missions to deprived communities within Akwa Ibom State to provide health education and screening services for various vision defects, diabetes, high blood pressure, malaria, HIV and other ailments. These missions are carried out in collaboration with individuals and communities to empower them to take personal responsibility and actions towards achieving optimal health and well-being for all those who live, work and play in these communities.
According to the Foundation’s website, “Our vision is to strive for engaged and empowered communities working together to achieve high quality of life and health for everyone in line with the World Health Organization’s social model of health which includes equity, social justice and sustainable development. We encourage a community-led approach to organize on issues of joint concern and strive together to build healthy communities, as well as, in other social areas like equity, social justice and sustainable development.”
The event, which had in attendance over 15 healthcare providers and medical personnel from renowned hospitals including Mercy Hospital, Abak, Ibom Specialist Hospital, Uyo, etc gave the residents opportunity to experience high-quality healthcare services at no cost.
CHIP offered a wide range of healthcare services including surgical operation, eye screening and reading glasses, hemoglobin test, drug dispensing, heart checks up, blood pressure, HIV test, Hepatitis test, Malaria test and treatment, typhoid test and treatment, blood sugar, medical counseling.
Speaking, the Executive Director of the foundation, Mrs. Joanna Owodiong Idemeko, said the outreach was borne out of passion and commitment to live out Catholic service through the provision of humanitarian services to the less privileged.
“The Foundation has been passionate in doing things for the people, knowing that government cannot do it alone. Having contentment in life enough to know when enough is enough for yourself and enough for you to be able to give back to the society. Definitely, all of us cannot be rich and all of us cannot be poor. That means that nothing is equal in life. We need each other in every step of the way. So, having a foundation and using it to reach out to people, like we have done, is a laudable thing to do,” she said.
Speaking on the benefit of possible partnership, Mrs. Owodiong-Idemeko said “With government partnership, we can reach out to more communities because we will have more in terms of logistics to reach out. Most importantly, what the Foundation does is government-oriented. So, partnership will help the government a lot.”
On the prevailing widespread cases of Hypertension and High-Blood-Pressure in the area, Mrs. Owodiong-Idemeko said “we have discovered that a lot of our people are living with health conditions they are not even aware of. Some of them have terrible high blood pressure that you cannot imagine and they do not know. I am happy that God has used us to reach out to this people.”
In her remarks, Deaconess Nseobong Akpan, a recipient of CHIP who was operated of Fibroid, expressed gratitude to the Foundation and prayed for the sustainability of the CHIP outreach.
Also, Mr. Effiong Okon Okpon, a recipient who took time out to eulogize Obong Ide Owodiong-Idemeko, a major sustainer of the foundation, said “But for the benevolence of our son, Ide Owodiong-Idemeko, I would have been dead. I had hernia and a successful surgery, courtesy the foundation, was carried out. My wellbeing is perfect now. I can even play football now. My prayer is that God should prosper and keep him and also give him the enablement to spread the good work of Wodiong Senie Foundation.”
Another recipient of the CHIP outreach, an aged man, Elder Imaikop Ekpoatang, whose eye was screened and prescription eyeglass given, lauded the Foundation for the gesture.
Other recipients who spoke included Mrs. Bassey Daniel, Elder Amos Anwan, Mr. Edet Enoch, Mr. Bassey, Mrs. Cornelia Udoh, Shelton Walton, Mrs. Ofon Godwin Bassey, Mrs. Effiong Okon Okpon and Mrs. Idorenyin Iniobong, who all enjoined government and other spirited organizations to emulate Wodiong Senie Foundation and take healthcare to the rural communities.