On Monday, March 4th, 2013, just five months after our launch, our first lorry filled with beds and medical equipment left the Isle of Wight for Moldova.

The lorry and our volunteers arrived on site at A E Brown Farms in Merstone at 8 a.m. There was a bitterly cold wind, and the sun remained stubbornly behind the clouds until the job was finished, but nothing could dampen the spirits of anyone who was there. Six months ago, this was just a dream. Now it is a reality.

The store that the farm had lent us for free was full, and we needed every inch of lorry space. With a lot of hard work and careful packing, the load was assembled so that it could be unloaded in the right order as the lorry travels from hospital to hospital.
The last bed is loaded onto the truck.

The last bed is loaded onto the truck.

Loading was managed by Victoria Dunford and our new Trustee Ruslan Ciobanu, with help from friends and volunteers. In an unbelievably short space of time the lorry was full and the load was being finally secured before the doors were closed. Just after 10.30 the lorry left the farm on its way to Moldova.

The lorry leaves on its journey to Moldova. The lorry leaves on its journey to Moldova.

We could not have done it without the help of many friends and supporters, and we have learned an enormous amount along the way. This is just the start. We’re not only helping update very poorly equipped hospitals, we’re also saving the NHS and local organisations thousands of pounds in disposal costs.

At the Wightlink Ferry Terminal at Fishbourne (thank you Wightlink) we added our sponsors’ support signs to the sides of the cab. Each company has sponsored a sign to contribute to the cost of the shipment. We aim to make this a bigger feature and opportunity for Island businesses in future. Sponsors for this trip were 1stbabyshop, HJ Bennett, Wight Leaflets, ESP Design and Print, Island Eye and PC Consultants. Other generous donations were received from Tad from Diametric, Roger Skidmore, Sandown and Shanklin Rotary and Ryde Rotary. Enormous thanks to you all.

We’ll be keeping in touch with Victoria and John, who are travelling out to Moldova to supervise delivery, and we’ll update you as things unfold. Meanwhile, if you’ve supported us this far, THANK YOU. We really value all you’ve done.

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