Dr. Will Mapham, the Baz Bus, Lungile Backpackers, the Bulungula Lodge and the Bulungula Incubator have done it again! In August this year, through their commitment to community development, this team came together to make it possible for a blind man to see.

Dr. Will, an old friend of the community who worked at the local Madwaleni Hospital for several years, returned in August this year (now an eye specialist) and identified patients that might qualify for cataract removal surgery at the Uitenhage Hospital in Port Elizabeth.

Without missing a beat, the Baz Bus immediately offered the 12 hour return trip for free while Lungile Backpackers threw in the 4 nights accommodation needed for the patients and their chaperone, Nomzingisi Hopisi, the Bulungula Incubator community care worker. The Bulungula Lodge and Coffee Shack Backpackers assisted with trips to and from Mthatha.

Transport generously provided by the Baz Bus

That trip helped Zwelithembile of Nqileni Village, where the Bulungula Lodge is located to regain his eyesight – a phenomena that is nothing short of miracle to the rest of the community! The word spread and Dr. Will was inundated with prospective patients when he returned in October.

Zwelithembile, the first Eye-team success

In October, Dr. Will identified 2 more patients: Nkunkwana Dudumayo from the village of Nditya and Nongilane Ngcazolo from Tshezi as potential candidates for the surgery. This time Goxobelana Futhu from Nqileni, who had refused to leave the village in August (and who was very skeptical that he could be made to see again) managed to overcome his fears and asked to be taken on this second trip.

They left on Tuesday 18 October, comfortably transported in their Baz Bus seats. On arrival, they were welcomed with refreshments by the friendly staff of Lungile Backpackers for their first stay ever in a hotel.

Refreshments on arrival at Lungile Backpackers

The rooms at Lungile Backpackers - a real treat!

The following day they were prepped for surgery and WaaaLaaaa, all three patients can see again!!!

Tata Goxobelana Futhu (the skeptic !) ready for surgery

And back at Lungile, post surgery…with their eyesight in tact again…

Another successful Eye-team mission!

Well done team!

– Dr. Will Mapham and Dr. Mark Jacoby at Uitenhage Hospital

– Coffee Shack and Bulungula Lodge  for trips to Mthatha

Baz Bus for the trip to PE

Lungile Backpackers for the accommodation

– Nomzingisi Hospisi of the Bulungula Incubator.

Thank you from all in the Xhora Mouth Community!!