When Tina Liddall puts her mind to something – no matter the cause – expect the task to be carried out.
The Kakanui woman recently spent time in the Nepalese capital of Kathmandu, where she and three people from Australia travelled to give much-needed medical supplies and care packages to the Kanti Children’s Hospital.
The hospital, which is in critical need of basic supplies as well as funding, is located in the Maharajgunj
Mrs Liddall said the idea for the trip to Nepal started in sad circumstances, when her friend Jody Ball’s mother, Iris McLaren, a nurse, died.
“I’ve got a friend in Australia and her mum was a nurse who used to volunteer at Kanti hospital. When she passed away, in lieu of flowers she has asked for donations for the children’s hospital.
“Jody, who is also a nurse, got some more donations from Lions and Rotary so we had quite a bit of money, so we went to the hospital and found out what they needed and purchased it directly from suppliers.”
Supplies donated included bandages, antiseptic creams, saline, antibiotics, hand sanitiser, gauze and basic shoes that are required to be worn by hospital visitors.
Before they travelled to Nepal, Mrs Liddall, a former paramedic, Mrs Ball and Misti-Lea Bull, who also works in the medical field, purchased food items and toys for care packages that were handed out to the hospital’s patients, 70 in total. The packages which also included clothing knitted by Mrs Liddall’s relatives.
In total, more than $A6000 (NZ$6180)was spent on medical supplies and items for the care packages.
Mrs Liddall said the hospital was run completely differently from those in New Zealand, especially when it came to the roles of staff.
“The hospital doesn’t feed the children. The parents have to. The parents can’t leave the hospital while their child is there, because the staff there only treat the child but don’t look after them.”
She said the biggest challenge was physically getting the supplies to the hospital.
The supplies, weighing more than 300kg, were packed tightly into pedal-powered rickshaws to be transported, and carried up three levels of ramps by the trio as the hospital’s lift was out of order.
However, Mrs Liddall said it was all worth it to see the children’s reactions.
“It’s huge. When you see the kids squealing and jumping up and down with excitement, it’s really cool and the parents are really thrilled, too.”
While another trip to Nepal has not been planned, she said it was possible in the future.
She wanted to raise funds for a sterilisation unit for the hospital, and a water blaster to clean the inside and outside of the building, which she said was in a bad state.
Mrs Liddall, who received a Kiwibank Local Hero award in 2015 for her volunteer and charity work in the community, said she enjoyed doing what she could for others.
“I do this sort of thing because I like to.”
The trip was documented by Mrs Ball’s daughter Kaydee, a journalism student based in Queensland.