More hope for children through Shoe4Africa
What you need to know:
- American philanthropist in Eldoret to spread Christmas cheer
- Former athlete Tanser champions construction of hospital for young cancer patients
Children suffering from cancer in Eldoret will benefit from high quality healthcare when construction of Shoe4Africa Juli Anne Perry Children Cancer Hospital in Uasin Gishu County is complete.
Construction of the new hospital is expected to be complete in the next one year.
Construction of the hospital is being funded by American philanthropist and former athlete Toby Tanser in collaboration with the Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital (MTRH).
The facility, which is being constructed as part of the Shoe4Africa Children’s Hospital, will have 164 beds once complete.
Another hospital, Harry Dyer Burns Unit which will have 60 beds, is also under construction in the same vicinity. Work on the hospital is expected to be complete in the same period of time.
Tanser has made it a tradition to visit the Shoe4Africa Children’s Public Hospital annual during Christmas to spend time with children admitted at the facility and their guardians.
Speaking in Eldoret on Saturday during this year’s visit, Toby, who visited the hospital in the company of various guests said that everyone is obligated to take care of unknown child in the world.
“We always converge here, being the only public facility to support the children and make sure that children who are ailing get the feeling that they are also part of us, especially during Christmas period,” said Toby. He said having a children’s public hospital will benefit many patients from underprivileged backgrounds.
Toby has been visiting sick children with former and current athletes as one way of inspiring the young ones.
“Athletes have been accompanying me to the facility to visit the children, and to inspire them. This is because I was once an athlete. We use athletes because sports demonstrate health living,” said Tanser.
Former 800m world champion Janeth Jepkosgei said spending time with sick children motivates her to do more. She urged other athletes to spare some time to encourage the sick.
“Not everyone spends Christmas holiday at home. Interacting with sick children makes them feel part of the society. It is a way of giving back to the society and it speeds up the healing process. Soon, they will head home,” said Jepkosgei.
Also present were world marathon record holder (women only) Mary Keitany, former Olympics 3,000m steeplechase champion Mathew Birir and his brother Jonah Birir, a former middle distance runner.
MTRH CEO Wilson Aruasa said the project aims at coming up with a children’s village which has facilities for treating children’s diseases in one place.