News and announcements

A Great Idea!


Every year, St Julian’s Methodist Church in Newport chooses a charity to support and this year the Church has chosen Health Help International. (Good choice!)  Eira Richards, the charity coordinator, explained that this means that every part of the church selects an aspect of HHI’s work and is tackling a particular project. 

What caught the eye of the Ladies’ Group in the church was the issue of girls’ education, especially the education of girls in the special needs schools we work with.  As you know, the children have to board at these schools because many live in remote villages, too far away for them to travel to and from school every day.

The St Julian’s ladies came up with the idea of providing each girl with their own washbag at the start of the school year.  As you can see in the photograph, each snazzy bag is filled with essential items as well as some ‘luxury’ bits and pieces.  So far we have received in excess of 40 washbags from them…every one jam packed.

What a great idea! Thank you to all the very busy and generous ladies at St Julian’s Methodist! 

Thank You Le Bowke Logistics

Le Bowke demonstrating wrapping

Le Bowke Logistics, Mamhilad, has come to the rescue in the nick of time!

At the moment, our storage space is accessible only with great difficulty (the lift is out of commission) and the prospect of moving our Zambia bound cargo on ‘C Day’ (container day) was daunting. 

Our new allies, the very professional, friendly and helpful staff at Le Bowke, have stepped in.  Not only have they provided us with storage space, they have shown us how to pack our items securely on pallets, using industrial strength cling film. Once we have prepared the pallets they will bring them to ground floor level via a large hole in the floor (30 feet up!). They will also help load our container using their machinery when the big day comes.  

Thank you again Le Bowke Logistics!

How will you celebrate your 80th birthday?

Guests climbing

If you are Iain Park, our HHI trustee and committee member, you spend it climbing one of the many beautiful Scottish hills and you invite your friends and family to join you. You then give them a wonderful memory of the climb in the form of a book called ‘Eye to the Hills’ inviting donations to HHI.

Iain has been climbing for over 60 years and for those who understand climbing he has climbed each Munro at least 3 times. (A Munro is a hill in Scotland over 3000 ft and there are 282 of them!) Needless to say he is fit and extremely knowledgeable on Scottish geography. I was one of the privileged guests to join him on January 14th in the snow and ice and managed to reach the summit of Ben Venue (Stirlingshire). The views were breath taking!

The next day, Sunday Jan 15th, following a church service in the East Kirk, Strathaven, sixty guests were treated to a delicious meal in the Strathaven Hotel. Everyone received a copy of Iain’s book Eye to the Hills.  Iain has been working on this epic book for the last 3-4 years. Each page describes one of his climbs, the people who accompanied him, the difficulties, the weather and how many times Iain himself has climbed it. The pictures are stunning. The book has received a glowing review by Keith Roberts (Keith is a freelance writer and tax consultant who lives with Gillian and their two school age children, Eilidh and Bruce, in a remote cottage five miles from Strathaven. Keith enjoys sport and country living, and has a keen interest in politics), and as a result Iain has been invited to speak at the prestigious Munro Society about his publication.

Iain is an inspirational fund raiser and ‘Eye to the Hills’ is already bringing in generous donations for HHI.

Muumba School is growing!

Muumba Pre school under construction

With the two classrooms full in both morning and afternoon sessions, it became clear that a covered area was needed in order to accommodate the youngest pupils.  

Stand by Hope and Market Square Uniting Church Toddler Group in Merthyr Tydfil!                                               

With a keen eye on developments at Muumba School, funds were quickly set aside by the group to provide materials for this kindergarden shelter.

However, as the photo shows, thoughts of a basic shelter were soon set aside.  Bricks which were left over from the building of the school wall were used to begin work on a third classroom. 

So, a big thank you to the builders for making use of surplus materials and a huge thank you to our Merthyr Hope and Market Square Church toddler group for your continuing support.

Diolch yn fawr iawn!

Recycle 4 charity

The following is an email received in the office the other day, and in our turn we too would like to thank our supporters for the way you remember us when your cartridges come to the end of their ink-life.


"Thank you for recycling your printer cartridges and mobiles phones with

Since your last payment, £57.73 has been raised by you and your supporters through our recycling programme during the period of 1/4/2016 - 30/6/2016, quarter 2.

I am sending you (the account holder) this email as confirmation that an automated payment, for the above amount, will be made to your nominated account on the 26/07/2016 with the reference: Recycle4Charity. aids over £1,000,000 in donations

Thank you everyone, we have now aided in the donation of over £1 million to good causes whilst keeping over 390 ton out of landfill. Why not take this opportunity to raise further awareness among your supporters of the recycling service we offer, how your charity has benefitted, and how they can get involved to help you raise more funds! We are promoting the service and milestone and invite you to do the same through the use of your intelligent link via your social media pages and digital communications to help us all reach the new goal, of £2 million pounds donated through recycling printer cartridges and mobiles together.


Intelligent Recycling Link

Wheelchair Repairs: Parts Needed

Robbie and wheelchairs

The number of wheelchairs we have been given to send to Zambia has dropped considerably in the last few years.  It became clear that in order to continue to support those with poor mobility, a big re-think was necessary.

Enter Robby.

Although disabled, Robby is our highly skilled wheelchair repair man.  With a family to support and the necessary skills for the job, Robby was the man for the job on offer.  Jonah, our Disabilities Affairs Manager, writes,

‘So far, Robby is working very well with loyalty and hard work. He has also a sense of reasoning through coming with suggestions on how the wheelchair repairs can advance. However, the challenges are that there are no tools and materials to use when repairing wheelchairs.

In view of the above, there are suggestions that materials and tools such as leather, assorted bolts and nuts, screws, Angle (L) Grinder, small drilling machine, welding machine, cane oil be purchased.   So far thirty three (33) wheelchairs have been repaired. The work done includes wheels, foot rest replacements, rear and front wheels, welding, leather mending, tying and knitting.’

Can you help?

Calling all occupational therapists and speech therapists

Occupational Therapy, Speech Therapy, South India, special needs children

Does anyone fancy a holiday with a purpose in India?

HHi supports two special needs units in South India.  Asha Kiran Ashram, in the countryside of Tamil Nadu, is the longer established, having opened its doors to 15 children in 2010. It now caters for about 50 children with a variety of disabilities.  Following on from the success of this project, we now support a fledgeling special needs unit at Kalathara, near Nedumangad in Kerala, which is developing rapidly.  Both of these projects have asked us if we can help them by sending out occupational and speech therapists who can treat the children and share best practice with our Indian partners.

This would suit OT or speech therapy students wanting to practice their skills, someone recently retired, or anyone else with either of these skills who wants to make a difference where it will really be appreciated.  We can provide simple accommodation; living in India is cheap, but you would need to provide your own airfare.

For further information please contact the HHI Office (details on our Contacts page).


HHI Knitters

Shaftesbury knitters

Many thanks to all our knitters. You are doing a fantastic job, so please keep the blankets etc coming. See the poster above.

However, please note, we do NOT need any more 'fish and chip' jumpers (Please see the picture gallery) as we have about 10,000 of them, and our storage space at Mamhilad has been greatly reduced.

Sunshine and Smile, after the Rain, 2016 - The Round Strathaven 50 cycle race

The start of the race

The excitement built early on an apparently fine Sunday morning.  Cyclists began arriving, shoes clicking across the tarmac and the hall floor even as registration desks were being set up; as the start banner was being tied to trees on the road outside.  Trays of cakes were handed in.

Strathaven’s Gala Queen, Carly Redmond-White, and her Champion, William McVeigh, counted down, and hundreds of gears clicked round as slowly the peloton headed for the countryside, nervously anticipating the roads ahead, some drooling, desperate to reach Sandford.

The weather changed, and those roads became very challenging as the riders headed west.  A detour this year took them to Loudoun Hill, and as they threw the bikes through the bends so that mighty volcanic plug disappeared as the clouds descended, drookit, windswept.  Before long though they had the wind at their backs, and the Sandford tea urn was on the boil.

Not for all was the lure of the cake too tempting.  The lead riders were checking in to St Pat’s in indecent haste, whilst others were still feasting.  Orin McConville and Rhuari Yeoman, both from EK Road Club, led the field home, by some distance.  They must have known there were more cakes and gallons of tea at the finish.

Meanwhile out on the roads weather conditions became kinder, and as the family run began in the afternoon the kids were blessed with sunshine.  The long slog up to Ardochrig, where the total climb for the main run rose to over 2,500ft, was packed with parents being pulled along by energy-charged children, looking for their downhill section through the former forest section, turning at Whitelaw to pick up the tail wind on the run back to base, where certificates were grasped as parents wheezed and climbed tenderly from the saddle.

Disabled children around Nedumangad, Kerala

disabled children special needs Nedumangad Kerala India

Our regular readers will know about Asha Kiran Ashram, our special needs centre in Tamil Nadu.   This great success has inspired Philip Mathew to do domething similar in his part of Kerala.  He has been offering physiotherapy to disabled children from poor families for a few years, with great results. Recently this has expanded to include speech therapy.

Earlier this year the centre moved down the road into a larger building at Kalathara.  This has enabled the project to expand into a fully fledged special needs centre which will be a caring community for disabled children and their families, including special needs teaching and training, providing the children with essential life skills.  Tom and Philip have gone ahead in faith with this project, but without funding, and now some 30 children have regular classes with two special needs teachers and two assistants.  As the children are so disabled they also need transport - local supporters have provided a vehicle, but they need a driver.

We have been able to get some grant funding for this project from a charitable trust, for which we are very grateful, but this will cover only part of the cost.  A special needs teacher costs £100 a month, and an assistant £70.  Could you help Tom and Philip with this inspiring project, and so help them to show God's love to children who would otherwise be despised as a source of shame in their Hindu culture?