CBCHS receives AFAS Director, Team

CBCHS receives AFAS Director, Team

By Bonkung Handerson

The prowess of the CBC Health Services in the domain of services to children and persons with disabilities has once more been demonstrated to a 5-man team (two from the AFAS Foundation, two from Liliane Foundation and one journalist) from Netherlands that visited Cameroon for one-week working visit from June 16-22, 2022.

Led by AFAS Director, Gerbert Johan Eversdijk, the team came to see for themselves how funds they supply to the CBCHS via the Liliane Foundation are judiciously used to better the lot of children and persons with disabilities. The other team members comprised: Chiara Francesca Beltramini, Communication Officer for Liliane Foundation, Jantje Anna Donker, Manager International Programs and Partnerships, Liliane Foundation, Marko Filipovic, Board member, AFAS Foundation and Bob Ludwig Albert van Huet, journalist. During a meeting with the CBCHS team on June 18 in Bamenda, the foreign partners were given the progress of CBCHS’ work in the domain of disabilities since 1952.

This overview was made by the CBC Coordinator of Services for People with Disabilities (SPD), Mr. Awa Jacques Chirac and corroborated by Prof. Tih Pius Muffih, Director of Health Services (DHS). Other presentations came from the Baptist Institute of Health Sciences (BIHS) Mbingo and Baptist Training School for Health Personnel (BTSHP) Banso. These two schools run programs and courses leading to certification in Physiotherapy, Community Based Rehabilitation and very soon in Occupational Therapy with support from AFAS Foundation.

According to Prof. Tih, DHS, the CBCHS crossed path with the Liliane Foundation in 2014 when the Foundation chose the CBCHS as a credible organization to continue running her projects in Cameroon, which hitherto, were run by the Catholics. With enormous support from Liliane Foundation and later on AFAS Foundations to identify, treat and rehabilitate children with disabilities, the CBCHS-EDID run program relocated from Bamenda to Yaounde to work closely with the Ministries and Health and Social Affairs in developing policies, protocols, curriculars and intense advocacy. The support from AFAS and Liliane Foundations also expanded services to children and persons with disabilities from an initial one region to nine regions today.

The DHS assured the visiting partners that the CBCHS has no problem of sustainability. “We have a struggle to surmount challenges as a team and not a struggle for leadership,” the public health expert boasted. Rather, Prof. Tih appealed on AFAS Foundation to link Cameroon up with other developing countries where they operate in order to foster South-South cooperation by sharing knowledge on how to prevent issues of disability, especially in Africa.

Responding, the team leader, Gerbert Johan Eversdijk said the CBCHS is just the perfect organization for AFAS to partner with. He said, it is rather AFAS Foundation to thank the CBCHS for doing the work on the ground and not the other way round. Gerbert Johan praised the CBCHS for excellent organization, believe in God, clean structures, which are ingredients for a strong partnership. He, however, challenged the CBCHS to transform the program into a movement which should involve more people to benefit from it.

The AFAS/Liliane Foundations team also met with members from the coordinating unit of the association of PWDs, undertook field visits to Mutengene, Bafoussam, Ngounso and Yaoundé where they had audience with the Minister of Social Affairs in the company of Prof. Tih Pius and Agho Glory, Manager of the EDID program.