Teresa Rodwell presenting the money at Brakespeare School

The gang at Brakespeare....

Face 2 Face and the Novgorod Connection...

The Clarendon Orchestra chose the Twin Town Fund as its original charity because of a strong link with Face 2 Face, a group of Christian professional musicians. They had  first visited Novgorod (one of Watford's twin towns) in 1999 although one member of the group had a connection dating back to 1991. They have given many concerts in various venues throughout the community including schools, orphanages, old people's home, a prison, centre for the blind, hospitals etc. These concerts were set up with the assistance of the Town Twinning department in Watford Council and the Administration of Novgorod. 

The Clarendon has raised £10,000....

The money raised has been given to the Central Children's Hospital.  Money raised by Face 2 Face has already purchased new toilets, medicines and medical supplies and fridges to keep the new stocks of medicines. It had been continually passed over when finances were given to the adult departments and they were desperately in need of an intensive care unit. The equipment in use was out of date and they had new equipment waiting to be installed when the building could be renovated. A donation given in June 2002 was just a token to enable them to begin the work. By November 2002, work in one room had been started, and by March 2003 one room of the intensive care unit had been completed and the new equipment installed.

A donation of $5000, given in August 2003, enabled the Central District Children's Hospital to purchase a much needed Blood Plasma machine which will be used in the treatment of child and teenage drug addicts whilst leaving some for much needed repairs.

After the Clarendon Concert in early 2004, the £4,000 raised along with other money raised by Face 2 Face was taken to Novgorod. It was to be distributed among the two Children's Hospitals that we had previously had contact with as well as the Regional Children's Hospital where a young Russian friend of ours had stayed.

The Twin Towns Fund continue to handle donations for needy causes such as the Novgorod children's hospitals. We are delighted to support that initiative and with the support and help of Face 2 Face the Orchestra will continue to donate funds.

The second concert raised a further £3,000 and here are some of teh improvements that the money has made possible.

The TB Hospital

Large donations were given to the Children's TB Hospital and the Central District Children's Hospital.

At the time of the last visit the TB Hospital had 47 children of whom 21 were orphans. Many children were from orphanage schools and several had parents who had no rights to bring up their children as they were ex-convicts. Some of the children's parents had themselves died from TB or alcohol abuse.

The chief Doctor, Zinaida, has been at the hospital for 11 years and says that this year was especially hard as the mental ability of the children was low and their memories were often poor and teaching them could be very challenging. The 11 teachers are extremely patient. There were some successes, however; Slava, aged 15, had a successful operation, was adopted and had begun studying at secondary school.

Sadly, Zinaida's husband died in September 2004 and she has had to find another job on Saturdays to supplement her income.

The money given in 2004 was spent on:

  • Clothes
  • Machine to treat breathing
  • Computer
  • 2 radiators
  • Shelves for TV
  • 2000 notebooks (1000 of which they sent to another hospital!)

In addition, flooring for the classrooms had already been ordered from St Petersburg.

They are already planning for the future and hoping to find some sponsors in Novgorod to help with building repairs in the classrooms and to fund some sports' projects. They would very much like to renew the central heating and buy an ultrasound machine but think it will probably be too expensive.

The Central District Hospital

The chief Doctor, Yuri had worked in the children's department for 12 years. Nadezhda, another Doctor in the department said they have been trying to make plans for 3 years but it is difficult to plan ahead due to rumours about the government. The local authorities had been making promises to the hospital for 2 years regarding major renovations but nothing had been forthcoming… yet.

They have spent money on:

  • Decoration of injection room
  • Some repairs to corridors, bedrooms and staff rooms
  • Benches for the corridors
  • Repair to front room
  • Sofa and TV for staffroom
  • Nebuliser
  • Telephone
  • Lamps in corridors
  • Lamps and furniture in children's rooms

There was still some money left…

Their future plans include major repairs to the staircase and window (at least £4000), dining furniture (approx £150), Bedside tables, sheets and clothes for small babies. However, prices are increasing all the time.

Regional Children's Hospital

A donation was given to the Ear, Nose and Throat department. The Matron, Luba, spent the money on:

  • 2 fridges to keep food for the patients
  • TV and DVD player which has helped to solve disciplinary problems among teenage patients
  • Curtains in the staffroom
  • Lamp for staff desk
  • Christmas and New Year gifts (chocolate and films) for the children in hospital over that period

Future projects include:

  • Special room for parents to stay (she intends to raise money by charging parents for this privilege)
  • General repairs to windows, kitchen, lighting
  • Another fridge and some furniture

The Orchestra are also delighted to support Brakespeare School in Abbots Langley who teach mentally and physically disadvantaged children using music therapy. We were delighted to part fund a trip to Novgorod for some of their pupils.

 


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