Hezron O. Mc'Obewa
The Kenyan contact is Dr. Hezron Mc'Obewa, MBBS MRCGP MPH,
Executive Director, OGRA Foundation whose extraordinary story is briefly outlined here.
Born 1974 at Kiliti, Miwani Division. Primary education at Kiliti School (then known as Wanangwe), Secondary education at Starehe School, Nairobi on a scholarship, sponsored by Mr. Peter Gibaut of Jersey.After GCE, visited Jersey through Peter Gibaut. Entered Victoria College, Jersey, 6th form, Sept. 1996 in Bruce House, tutor Ed Le Quesne. Passed A level Physics, Chemistry and Biology in June 1998 and won the Queens's Gold medal for Science at Victoria College. 5 years at Nottingham University studying medicine, ending with the degrees, BmedSci, MBBS in June 2003, sponsored by people in Jersey.
While at Nottingham, he won the top prize for an elective study on attitudes to AIDS in Kenya. As a result he set up the Wanangwe School and Orphanage Trust (WASOT) in Jersey in Dec. 2000, to help the AIDs orphans in his home area. This works through the OGRA foundation in Kenya. OGRA has been helping up to 1000 orphans with finding foster homes, feeding, uniforms, schools fees etc and trying to develop income generating projects. Floods in April 2003 and 2004 set back their work but OGRA is remaining true to its motto ‘Giving hope, saving lives’.
From August 2003, he was a houseman at Derby General Hospital. He returned to Kenya in November 2007,when he had completed his training.
In June 2002, Hezron organized a group of 20 medical students from Nottingham University medical school to spend a fortnight helping to build the Port Florence Community Hospital (PFCH) near Kisumu. Hezron has used his contacts in England to get much equipment for the hospital from UK hospitals and clinics that were upgrading or closing down. Further groups of students have visited it for their elective study and help with fundraising, through a UK registered charities, WASOT-UK and Kenya Orphan Project. PFCH is now a busy hospital with 35 beds providing much needed medical services to the people.
In 2003, an outreach clinic was built at Ombeyi, near Kiliti, about 15 miles from Kisumu, with funds from the Jersey Overseas Aid Committee and private donors in Jersey. This opened as the Le Quesne clinic on December 31st 2003. It is bringing health care close to 25,000 people. In its first year of operation the clinic was funded partly by a grant from the Elton John Foundation. A visit from two members of the Foundation in Jan 2005 gave praise for the way the clinic was run. A second clinic at Kadinda on similar lines will be built in the area reducing the distances patients need to travel. The clinic has expanded to 35 beds.
In 2004, Hezron married Connie Opondo, who was an accountant working in Nairobi. She got a visa and moved to UK in August 2004, and worked in local government in Derby. Their first child Samantha was born in June 2005 and the second Peter in October 2006. They consider their family complete.
The photo shows Hezron, Connie and Samantha during a visit to Jersey in July 2006.