You are probably already aware of HORIZONS TRUST, which is an enterprise founded and registered in the United Kingdom by Professor James N’Dow of the University of Aberdeen School of Medicine, Scotland.

In brief, HORIZONS TRUST is “a self-sustaining social enterprise and a Public-Private-Philanthropic-Partnership that is designed to provide private high quality health care through a state of the art international hospital that will be built and operated in The Gambia. HORIZONS has two distinct but inter-related arms: the charitable arm and the commercial arm. The charitable arm of HORIZONS comprises two sister philanthropic entities, viz: HORIZONS TRUST UK and HORIZONS TRUST GAMBIA. The Private for Profit component (Horizons Clinic Africa Limited) will operate and manage the hospital."

The private hospital, which will serve private clients from within and beyond The Gambia (under Health Tourism for example), will through HORIZONS TRUST GAMBIA, provide support to the national health care delivery system for the purpose of improving access to high quality health care services to all Gambians. The priority of this collaborative arrangement with the Gambia Government (and its health development partners) will be on The Gambia attaining its targets for MDGs 4 and 5, with particular emphasis on the accelerated reduction of Maternal and Newborn morbidity and mortality.

Without awaiting the construction and commencement of operation of the private-for-profit Hospital in The Gambia, HORIZONS TRUST GAMBIA has already initiated projects and activities in collaboration with the Ministry of Health, Gambia; such as: SoapBox Collaborative of the University of Aberdeen and the Department of Health Improvement in the UK National Health Service Trust of NHS Grampian, in Scotland. One such activity is a project called the Gambia Maternity Cleanliness Champions Initiative or GMCCi, which is currently piloting an innovative approach to improving Maternal and Newborn health and survival under limited resource settings. Another area of cooperation with the Ministry of Health is the Regional Training Workshop on Gastroenterology, including Endoscopy that is scheduled for mid-January 2014, to be held here in The Gambia. This project, which we hope will result in The Gambia being selected as the West Africa Sub-Regional Training Centre for Gastroenterology, is a collaborative effort between Horizons Trust, the World Gastroenterology Organization (WGO), Karl Storz - a leading German manufacturer of medical equipment (endoscopes in particular); and the Medical Research Council Gambia which will be hosting the event at their Fajara facilities. It is also hoped that the World Health Organization (WHO) and the West African Health Organization or WAHO (the health arm of ECOWAS) will also agree to co-sponsor this important training workshop – the first of its kind in our sub-region.

It is with these and similar planned activities in mind, that we were grateful for the generous gesture made by the ownership of Ngala Lodge for the organising of this fundraising event on behalf of HORIZONS. 100% of the proceeds from the Dinner/Concert and the Silent Raffle went to the proceeds of HORIZONS TRUST GAMBIA. The evening was a great success enjoyed by all.

HORIZONS TRUST GAMBIA is a Charitable Foundation that was registered in The Gambia in 2012 for the explicit purpose of implementing the charitable objectives of the UK Holding Company whose ownership includes Gambian Entrepreneurs, as well as external individuals and groups.

This extraordinary PUBLIC/PRIVATE/PHILANTROPHIC PARTNERSHIP had right from the outset, agreed to provide the overwhelming majority of its share capital to its charitable arm – HORIZONS TRUST GAMBIA, FOR THE EXCLIUSIVE PURPOSE OF ASSISTING THE GOVERNMENT OF THE GAMBIA PROVIDE HIGH QUALITY HEALTH CARE TO ALL IN THE GAMBIA.

This will be achieved through working with the Gambia Ministry of Health and its partners and co-implementers in health development initially in one Health Region, but with the objective of scaling up the proven effective interventions to the rest of the country progressively and sustainably, over time.

Sponsorship and donations are still welcome for this project to improve the quality of health care for all pregnant woman and newborn infants in the Gambia