Patients at the Coast Hospice were treated to a session of manicure, pedicure, hand and foot massage from Marianist Development Project (MDP) hairdressing class in a recent daycare session held every fortnight.
According to the Coast Hospice Administration Officer, Jane Mwanyumba, such a treat gave their patients an experience they have always longed for given that most of them have illnesses or conditions that prevent them from attending a salon or spa.
“The hospice patients have endured a long list of treatments ranging from blood transfusion, surgery, radiation and chemotherapy among others.” She said.
The session was supervised by MDP hairdressing instructor Christine Chula alongside their Marketing Manager Cate Muthuri and Job Creation Officer Hellen Mahugu.
Other than patients, caregivers were also treated to free plaiting, thanks to the girls whose course entails hair dressing, trades of carpentry, catering and metalwork.
The MDP team also had a chance of learning about the palliative care, volunteering and cancer through facilitation from the hospice staff.
Christine Kache Chula from the same project said that the girls were having an opportunity to show what they have learnt through free services to the community.
Cate Muthuri applauded Coast Hospice saying that they are doing great work caring for the patients and wished that they get more sponsorship to accommodate those with extreme cases of illness and in meeting the cost of treatment.
“I found the logistics of going to Nairobi too hectic for the patients and wish the government could equip the coast hospitals. The patients are open and so welcoming. The staff is also caring and committed and I could not believe their zeal to care for patients. Consider inviting more people to cheer patients and care givers. Muthuri Said.
Tima Omar, one of the patients said, “My children and grandchildren will not recognize me today. I have not plaited my hair since my surgery.”
Jane Irungu from the Breast Cancer Awareness Support Group (BCASG) in Mombasa shared her experience as a breast cancer survivor and also took the girls through self breast examination while Hamida Abubaker from the same group shared a poem titled; ‘how long we live is not important BUT how well we live is very important’
“This has come at the right time, I look beautiful today and my husband will be surprised.” Jane Irungu said, after going through the beautification and relaxation session.
Salim Mwachinyezi, a patient, said he felt so refreshed. “I will sleep like a baby tonight. My feet feel lighter.”
“I can not remember the last time someone washed my feet.” Karisa Katana said
Coast Hospice Clinical Coordinator Mr. Eric Amisi said that this was a relaxing atmosphere for the patients and caregivers.
“It was an opportunity to create awareness about life limiting illnesses especially breast and cervical cancer to young girls. The girls were eager to learn and also have a touch of what we do at the hospice.” Mr. Amisi said.
M/s. Nancy Mura of Coast Hospice said that this was the first time to have such an event, adding that it was a unique one for their patients and caregivers.
The hospice team said this was a good break from the challenges of illness that shows how simple acts of kindness can go a long way in making patients with life limiting illnesses comfortable.
MDP is a trade school that serves the needs of destitute youth between the ages of 15 and 25 years who want to improve their lives through learning job and life skills.