A CHARITY-FUNDED maternity hospital in a remote mountain area of
Lesotho is having to review its care because of funding levels.
St James Mission Hospital is supported by Us, the charity
formerly known as USPG. Katharine Hamilton, who works for Us, spent
time at the hospital with pregnant mothers while heavily pregnant
herself. She gave birth to a girl on her return to the UK, before
Ms Hamilton said that heavily pregnant women have to walk hours
to get to the hospital while in labour, with some giving birth on
the way, often alone.
The hospital has attempted to help by setting up a
waiting-mothers' lodge for women who live some distance away, or
those with complications.
Ms Hamilton said: "The waiting-mothers' lodge at St James
Hospital is an absolute godsend. Women can come weeks before they
give birth. These are women who either live very far away, or who
are at high risk during their final stages of pregnancy. . .
"People are vulnerable: some people are poor, and their lives
are difficult. . . The staff here are very emotionally involved.
They're very passionate about their work. They're doing a fantastic
job. And the gospel really is at the heart of everything they
As an Anglican hospital, St James's provides pastoral care and
social support as well as medical treatment. It celebrated its 50th
anniversary in 2013. The charity is appealing for donations to
support the continued work of the hospital.