After seven years working across four accounts in FMI I was shocked and delighted to be named Employee of the Year for 2018 for my work on our Electric Ireland account. In April we gathered all of our Dublin Head Office team were Nicola de Beer, our Managing Director announced I was being sponsored by FMI to go on a trip of a lifetime to Uganda with Nurture Africa.
Nurture Africa was established in 1997 to provide healthcare and education to the most vulnerable children in communities in Uganda. Their aim is to nurture the mental, physical and emotional wellbeing of those infected and affected by HIV/AIDS by providing healthcare, opportunities and training to them through their programs.
Whilst we were on the ground in Nansana, we could get a real feel for the important work done by Nurture Africa and impact they have on the lives of the community. One such place where we got to see the incredible work done by the team is in their medical centre. It is there that they deliver babies, give maternity aftercare, counselling services, HIV treatments and physiotherapy. This centre is at the heart of what they do in Uganda and is essential for giving educated care and advice to the community.
Another key initiative in place is the Sustainable Livelihood Programme. Under this programme, Nurture Africa provide micro-finance and training to parents and guardians of the children to start or develop an income generating activity. These range from textiles to farming and entertainment. They also provide training to 160 young people between 14-24 years in life skills such as sewing, hair dressing, IT and catering and have opened a café with a hairdressers where students can get practical experience. This, alongside the community library provide essential support and training to members of the community.
We were fortunate enough to get involved with lots of the different initiatives in place in Nansana such as first aid training in the Little Diamonds school, home visits to members of the community and building vital infrastructure in the village. It was amazing to see the impact our presence has on the locals, in particular the children. Their positive outlook and optimism was so inspiring and put everything into perspective for us!
I’m so grateful for this opportunity given to me. I never would have thought this time last year, that this was something I’d get the chance to do. While we were there, we spoke to the local children about their dreams and goals and hearing them speak about their aspirations, was so inspiring. They are so ambitious and optimistic, and they truly believed they wanted to make a difference and have an impact like the people they’ve seen go through the programme.
After this experience, I feel my outlook has changed for life!
Thank you FMI, Sarah Doyle, Junior Account Manager – FMI.