Foster mothers at village benefit from training in all-important CPR

Staff at Netcare Umhlanga Hospital inspired by work of LIV Village

Friday, August 22 2014

In celebration of National Women’s Month in August, an experienced team of nurses from Netcare Umhlanga Hospital recently trained 25 foster mothers in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) at LIV Village, a centre that provides residential care for orphaned and vulnerable children.

Dr Burton Shinners, general manager of Netcare Umhlanga Hospital, says LIV Village, which is situated in Hazelmere, Ethekweni, is a remarkable project that is doing outstanding work within the community, particularly in caring for orphaned children within the greater Durban area.

“We felt that the foster mothers of LIV Village would benefit from having a working knowledge of CPR, which is a technique useful in many emergencies, in which someone's breathing or heartbeat has stopped. One just never knows when such skills, which can be lifesaving, may be needed within the community,” adds Dr Shinners.

LIV Village is a cluster of homes where orphaned and vulnerable children are brought up in a nurturing, family environment. The homes are built in clusters of eight surrounding communal play areas. Each of the homes has a trained foster mother who loves and provides physical care for six orphaned and vulnerable children.

“The training team from the hospital, which was led by Sister Cheryl Pillay, was inspired by the caring house mothers, and delighted to be able to equip them with CPR skills. I think the mothers and nursing team proved to be kindred spirits,” adds Dr Shinners.

Carita Neethling of LIV Village says that the foster mothers were most grateful for the training they received from the Netcare Umhlanga Hospital nursing team. “They said they found it invaluable and empowering,” she observes.

“Assistance from organisations such as Netcare Umhlanga Hospital is always most welcome and it has been most gratifying for us to have formed a relationship with the facility this year. In addition to providing this training, the hospital has also sponsored beds, food, trays, a jungle gym, supplies and equipment for our medical clinic,” notes Neethling.

LIV Village was the brainchild of former South African cricketer Tich Smith, and was established in 1997. It enjoys the support of many well-known KwaZulu-Natal sportsmen and businesses, and today consists of no fewer than 150 homes supporting 1 000 children. It includes an early childhood development centre, and primary and secondary schools. A farm and clothing factory ensure that the project is self-sustaining, whilst providing employment opportunities for members of the surrounding community.

LIV Village aims to place orphaned and vulnerable children of the greater Durban area into a nurturing environment with a foster mother as well as with schooling educate them. “If these children are equipped with essential moral values and life skills, they will grow up to be a generation that will influence positive change within South Africa,” says Dr Shinners.

“Netcare Umhlanga Hospital is constantly looking at ways we can empower and assist the communities we serve. We have been greatly impressed by the work being undertaken by LIV Village and hope that the assistance we have provided will be of benefit to the organisation and its people. We wish this inspiring initiative every success into the future, as it deserves to grow from strength to strength,” concludes Dr Shinners.



Issued by :     Martina Nicholson Associates (MNA) on behalf of Netcare Umhlanga Hospital
Contact :       Martina Nicholson, Graeme Swinney, Sarah Beswick and Jillian Penaluna
Telephone :    (011) 469 3016
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