JDWNRH: A garage sale of secondhand items at the Jigme Dorji Wangchuck National Referral Hospital (JDWNRH) yesterday earned Nu 31,201 and Nu 3,550 from the sale of baby clothes that was held to help raise money to buy hand-wash detergents for the hospital.

Two volunteers with the Japan International Cooperation Agency coordinated a garage sale, along with 13 volunteers, including hospital staff and three students of Motithang HSS.

A midwife at JDWNRH, Emi Tsukamoto, said she noticed that the referral hospital does not have hand-washing detergents, which are a necessity for a hospital. “Hand-washing detergent is important for infection control,” she said.

The volunteers also asked for donations to buy yarn for knitting caps for premature babies.  Last year, 116 volunteers, students of Changangkha MSS and Motithang HSS, and wives of senior JICA officials, knitted caps to keep the heads of premature babies warm.

Emi Tsukamoto, who initiated the project called Tshegho (Garment of Life), said premature babies usually suffer from hypothermia, and that the caps would help maintain their body temperature.  The hats were distributed to all hospitals in the country on November 17, World Premature Day, last year.

The volunteers collected a donation of Nu 12,550 yesterday for project Tshegho.

To raise awareness for the environment, a knitted sponge, named ‘ECO sponge’, for cleaning purposes, was also distributed to the donors.

Emi Tsukamoto said that, with a donation of Nu 50, donors can make four preterm babies warm and happy.  A skein of yarn costs Nu 50, out of which four baby caps can be knitted.

She also added that some of the income from the garage sale would be donated to the earthquake victims in Nepal.

The volunteers meet at Harmony Youth Centre in Thimphu every Saturday to knit hats and socks for preterm babies.

By Dechen Tshomo