|7 Feb 2022
|Old Girls' Association
Georgina left St Swithun’s shortly after beginning her A-levels as she wanted to work with horses and managed to convince her father it was a good idea! She had a wonderful time eventing and continued for a while after her father had passed away until she made the adventurous decision to head off to Kenya.
It was there for seven years that Georgina lived in mud and wattle huts with an elephant’s jawbone to sit on for the latrine, in a camp in the African bush. She worked alongside the famous George Adamson MBE, the wildlife conservationist and author depicted in the book and film Born Free. Whilst she was there, Georgina was responsible for a wide variety of jobs such as, supply trips to Nairobi, answering fan mail, bottle feeding abandoned lion cubs and looking for lions with George for the many visitors they had to camp. It was a very happy time for Georgina. Once a year she used to come back to England to visit her mother. It was during one of these return visits that Georgina shockingly learned that George had been murdered by bandits and sadly that chapter of her life came to an unexpected close.
Georgina decided to train as a nurse at the Royal Free hospital in London where she specialised in tropical nursing and soon she went back to Kenya. To register as a nurse there and before she could have her own clinic, Georgina had to also become a midwife and trained at Nakuru provincial hospital to achieve this. Alongside this, she also worked in private nursing jobs dealing with a variety of situations from burns to family planning and crocodile attacks!
Georgina was later offered a job in Keew, South Sudan where there were no cars, phones or laptops and they relied on an old radio for communication with their base in Nairobi in case they had to coordinate an evacuation. Drinking water was flown in every fortnight (weather conditions permitting) and water for showering came from a swamp over a mile away from camp and was filtered and treated with alum. It was an area contaminated by Guinea worm and there were also plenty of snakes and scorpions. Georgina tried to help local dogs too, with a rabies vaccination program and first aid. She remember them following her around like the Pied Piper! Later Georgina worked in Rumbek, which was an SPLA (Sudan People’s Liberation Army) stronghold, in a big clinic with a TB and leprosy program. She trained a handful of local people to carry out basic diagnostic tests like blood grouping and malaria etc.
After that she went to Juba, where she used an old motorbike to get around and ran her own clinic with the luxury of a helicopter on standby for medevac.
In January 2008, Georgina received yet further shocking news when she heard her mother had been murdered at home in Hampshire. She came back to England to be with her family and deal with the investigation and court case which took many years. She made the decision to stay in the UK and worked in a hospital in Brighton on the gynaecology ward, thoroughly enjoying the role and working with her talented colleagues.
Now Georgina has settled in West Sussex and works as a community nurse on twilight and overnight shifts. She visits patients at home and in residential homes to help them with emergency situations and palliative care – a very varied role which means she never quite knows what will crop up next.
Thank you Georgina for all you do.
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