Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Mama honours her inspirational doctor

Our first Dr Danwata Scholars with Mama and Papa
 Mama is honouring the specialist who treated her by giving his name our  Happy House scholarship scheme to educate impoverished young people.
Nigerian-born oncologist, Dr Falalu Danwata gave Mama hope and focus during 18 months breast cancer treatment in Blackpool,  which meant prolonged separations from the home and family she loves
“Dr Danwata was so kind, positive and supportive of me during my treatment. He told me to focus forward, that I was an individual and every person was different. I took his advice, acknowledged the fact I would be away from my children for 18 months, and generally accepted my life as it was at that time.
“Due to his support and advice neither Papa nor I ever doubted that I would be well again.
“I can never thank him enough, or those people who educated him and made him into the person he is,  a highly qualified, caring, special man.’
Dr Danwata
A plaque to dedicate the scholarship scheme to Dr Danwata now hangs alongside his photograph in our school.
Since making a full recovery and returning to the Happy House, Mama has taken her Happy House forward and her family has grown to 82.
She had a strong feeling there was something more she had to do, by helping more children who desperately needed the ‘gift’ of an education.
She heard about some children who are very bright but unable to access any education due to poverty.  Education is supposed to be free in Government schools that have 70-80 children per class but parents must pay for uniform, shoes, and books and is often beyond their means and their kids can’t go to school.
It was decided to take the 20 in most need into primary classes six and seven on free scholarships.  This includes uniforms and shoes, as many were barefoot, PE kit, exercise and text books, plus a main meal and snacks every day. 
“We are confident that through our website and daily blog we will secure sponsors for the education of these children who, otherwise, had no chance of achieving their dreams of being doctors, engineers or teachers.”
Sue is honouring her doctor, who came from humble circumstances himself, by calling the scheme, the Dr Danwata Scholarship.
He once told Sue that education is the most precious gift to any child, something that nobody could ever take away from them. 
Mama and Papa with Derrick, whose ambition is to be a
 lawyer and Diana who longs to be a doctor.
Dr Danwata grew up in a Nigerian village. His family their friends and relations realized he was a very bright child. They all made financial contributions towards his education in a local primary school before attending a Government boarding school.
“He once told me education was the most precious gift to any child, something that nobody could ever take away.  We know that he will be an inspiration to all our students and to all our family,” she said.
Dr Danwata grew in a Nigerian village. His family, their friends and relatives realised he was a bright child and all made financial contributions to his education in a local primary school before attending a Government boarding school.
He graduated in medicine and science from Ahmadu Bello University, followed by pre-registration junior medical practice at the University’s teaching hospital. He came to the UK on a World Health Organisation Scholarship for further training   at the Christie Hospital, Manchester in 1996, where he spent four years.
He has been at Rosemere Cancer Trust, Preston since 2000 and Associate Specialist in Clinical Oncology at the Centre since 2008 and works at Blackpool Victoria Hospital as the peripheral clinic. His specialist areas of interest and work are in Breast Cancer, Colorectal Cancer and Genitourinary cancers.
 He is delighted to be giving his name to the Happy House School’s Dr Danwata Scholarship Scheme
“I treated Sue at the Blackpool Victoria Hospital and the Rosemere Cancer Centre. She is an inspiring and remarkably generous charity worker.
“Following completion of her treatment, I was surprised to hear that Sue and her charity have decided to honour me with naming a scholarship scheme for disadvantaged children in Kenya after me. “It is an honour and privilege for me and I have  gladly accepted.  I'm quite happy to associate myself to this noble cause which will hopefully enable many children to achieve their full potential.”
If you would like to help by sponsoring the education of a Dr Danwata Scholar it costs £25 each month or £300 annually. Please email elizabethgomm@childrenofwatamu.net for more details.