A young Sleaford woman is gearing up for a three-week expedition to Tanzania on the work experience trip of a lifetime.
Heather Watson, 19, finished her A-levels in health and social care and IT at Sleaford Joint Sixth Form this year and hopes to study child nursing at university in 2015.
She flies to Tanzania on May 31 under the Gap Medics scheme. There she will be shadowing doctors and nurses at the regional hospital in Iringa and seeing their healthcare system in a completely different culture and environment. Heather adds: “In the evenings, you have lectures to attend where you learn about what you’re doing and can put your learning into the work experience. I will also be volunteering at the orphanage in my days off and evenings.”
She is organising a pamper event to raise money for the orphanage, saying: “The money will be spent on medical supplies, beds, food for the orphans, educational books and toys, clothes and so much more. I want to make a change, even if it’s just a small difference, I want to help other people who are at a disadvantage.”
Heather works seven days a week waitressing and running a shop. She said: “I’ve paid for the Tanzania trip entirely by myself, which is going to cost me roughly £3,000.
“I’ve made a lot of sacrifices for this trip, but I believe every sacrifice and penny spent will be worth it. I used to volunteer at my local brownies and youth club for four years and now I volunteer at my local nursery and at my local primary school. I love working with all the children and am very passionate about it. I didn’t go to university straight away because I wanted to get some real work and life experience as well as earn money as my family couldn’t afford to financially help.”
The fundraiser is on Saturday, November 22, at Leasingham Village Hall from 11am-3pm. Stalls include pamper treatments, Christmas merchandise, Forever Living, the Body Shop, teddy tombola, games, arts and crafts for children, cake sale, teas and coffees, a face painter, plus a photographer to take some photobooth-style pictures complete with moustache props and funny glasses.
There is also a raffle with lots of great donated prizes. People can donate at www.gofundme.com/hevtanza niatrip. Heather has been assisted by parents Fiona and Dave and sister Becca.