July 1, 2017 By Kevin Omondi
A large number of babies are born with congenital heart conditions, in Kenya every year. The Nairobi Hospital and her partner corporates are committed to helping children afflicted with this condition, especially those from economically disadvantaged backgrounds by hosting The Nairobi Hospital Children’s Charity Fund Golf Tournament to create awareness for and seek funds towards managing and alleviating this condition. This year, the tournament, in its 14th edition was held at the Karen Country Club, with Deryl Aduda and I on hand to ‘Take a Swing at Touching a Child’s Heart’.
The Karen Country Club has one of the fairest courses in the country, and on 30th June, more than 150 golfers turned up for the charity tourney (which could have also doubled up as a chance for golfers to get some much-needed practice ahead of the weekend’s Kenya Amateur Golf Championship for enthusiasts). The competition teed off on the back nine, and by the 7th hole, it was clear that some of the players were taking no prisoners.
The CSS was 36 points for both men and women, with Cyllus Onyango emerging as the overall winner of the competition, amassing a commendable 43 points (as well as receiving the longest-drive in the men’s category honours). Other awards of note went to Laura Auma: longest-drive in the women’s category with Vicky Karuga, 36 points earning the runners-up prize in the women’s category which was won by E Gathoni with a fantastic score of 40 points. Kudos E Gathoni! The men’s category had George Makori, 39 points as runners-up with Alex Kimaru being the winner with 42 points (only a point off Cyllus Onyango). Congratulations to all the winners!
Apart from matters on the greens and fairways, the tournament is on course to raise more than 8.5 Million Kenya Shillings to be used in corrective surgery, rehabilitation and management of young patients suffering from congenital heart defects in the country, who are unable to meet the cost of treatment as a result of their economic conditions. Moreover, the tournament, brought together captains of industry, various corporate sponsors, partners of The Nairobi Hospital and other stakeholders with the aim of spreading awareness about congenital heart defects and most importantly the remedial action required to bridge the gap between care, management and treatment and actual availability and provision of the same, especially to children from families who cannot afford it.
The Nairobi Hospital Children’s Charity Fund Golf Tournament, conceived in 2013, with last year’s edition raising enough money to fully cover 11 surgeries for needy children across the country, wants to do more for these and other children and families in similar circumstances through your help and support. Next year’s tournament will be graciously hosted by and at the Karen Country Club and in the meantime, as you improve your handicap, you’re wholeheartedly encouraged to contribute to the fund in any way you can; help create awareness in your capacity, regardless of its humility and invest in a child’s future. Perhaps they too can one day enjoy the satisfaction from putting an iron through a ball and driving it as far as the eye can see.
To the Nairobi Hospital, through your CEO Gordon Odundo, your corporate partners and sponsors of the Golf Tournament, The Karen Country Club and all the golfers who turned up to swing for a heart, through your various club captains, thank you and keep up the good work.