Call it Extreme Makeover: Hospital Edition. Smile Train recently provided the Nyeri County Referral Hospital in Kenya with an unbelievable facelift. In just six months, what had once been a nearly abandoned, dilapidated ward blossomed into a pristine, comfortable facility for delivering top-quality care to cleft and eye surgery patients. The upgraded facilities include: a plastic and maxillofacial surgical theater, two recovery wards, and a children’s play area.
Maxillofacial surgeon Dr. Emily Nyamu, a Smile Train partner, recalled how the project came to be.
“Years ago, I had put refurbishing this theater on my vision board and I can’t express how overjoyed I am that this has finally come to pass,” she said. “The fresh new look of the theater and children’s play area give us a more relaxed atmosphere with state-of-the-art equipment. These facilities will give children with clefts priority attention in a comfortable environment.”
Smile Train Program Director for East Africa Jane Ngige-Muturi cut the ribbon to open the ward amid jubilation from the hospital team at an event attended by the County of Nyeri’s Executive Committee Member of Health, Dr. Rachel Kamau, and Medical Superintendent, Dr. Robert Ngunjiri. In her remarks, Jane noted that the facelift was an investment that would elevate the overall quality of treatment offered at the hospital.
“The hospital is an unfamiliar environment to children, which can be unsettling. So, to give a more relaxed environment for recovery, Smile Train has upgraded two wards and created a play area,” she said.