Gifts to The Gambia

DSC 0250 2 600 x 402 Totus staff collected gifts to donate to children in The Gambia.

Totus staff have been busy collecting gifts for children in The Gambia. More than 165kg of presents including clothes, toys and games have been collected and carefully wrapped, ready for the long flight to Africa this December.

Whilst The Gambia is somewhat further away than our usual work locations, Totus have forged a strong client relationship with the Medical Research Council (MRC) delivering repeat business since 2013.

Totus were awarded a second contract to upgrade the existing low voltage electrical infrastructure for the MRC situated in Fajara, approximately nine miles from the capital Banjul. The MRC is an organisation dedicated to improving human health. As the one of the largest employers in the country, the organisation supports internationally recognised research across the entire spectrum of medical science, in universities and hospitals, in its own units, centres and institutes in the UK, and in units in Africa.  

Totus are currently providing essential supplies across the 100 acre site which consists of research and clinical laboratory facilities, a clinical services department, a biobank and 40 residential units.

Steve Belfield, Contracts Manager for Totus commented, “I am fortunate that I was selected to deliver the first project in The Gambia during 2013 and am now completing this most recent upgrade. I spend up to 5 weeks at a time in Africa’s smallest country and whilst it is renowned for and dominated by its farming, fishing and tourism with many beautiful beaches, there are narrow strips of tin shacks and breeze-block houses beyond the tourist zone. More than a third of its 2 million population live below the international poverty line of $1.90 per day.  

Despite this, we have witnessed a country where people are extremely proud and determined to better themselves.  We have developed many great relationships over the past few years and the people have always proven to be very kind and generous providing our team with handmade traditional clothing and carvings despite having very little for themselves. I have friends who write to me whilst I am in the UK and I have even had a child from the nearby village named after me! It is this incredible kindness and the respect that I have for this wonderful country and its people, which made me want to give something back.

Despite all of the good that I have seen, there is much hunger and many children, including orphans in the area, who have little or nothing. The response from everyone at Totus and from their family and friends has been fantastic. We have also been helped through air freight and customs by our friends at Redcoat Express Ltd and Edgar Holdings Ltd who have kindly reduced or waived costs wherever they were able to do so. 

I cannot wait to see the smiles from the children when we return to hand out gifts in December.”