CHI is looking for two new Trustees, with one becoming the Chair of the Board.
Before Covid, it was fairly vital to live in Hampshire but with Board meetings now feasible by Zoom, Trustees can live anywhere in UK!
The charity is unique in offering practical CF healthcare support across all the components of the multi-disciplinary team – physiotherapy, diet, psychology etc.
CHI has an active CF respiratory physician as its Medical Adviser, Dr Julian Legg, and a retired consultant as its President, Dr Chris Rolles.
The charity operates alongside such bodies as the UK’s CF Trust and the European Cystic Fibrosis Society.
The joy of the work is to see life expectancy raised in most cases and quality of life usually much improved.
A person, who takes on this responsibility as a Trustee, should be energetic, be interested in healthcare and ideally be willing to learn about cystic fibrosis, be happy to travel and would, with advantage, speak a foreign language or two and would ideally already have experience of working in the Charity sector.
One of our CF consultants has written:
Since 1994, I, together with a team from the Royal Brompton Hospital London, have provided CF training and clinical expertise with the logistical, financial and language support of CHI to Lviv, Odessa and Kiev, Ukraine, Vilnius, Lithuania and Minsk in Belarus. Some projects were more successful than others and crucially relied on the face to face rapport one tries to develop. The support CHI gives is fundamental in facilitating these efforts and without it, they would have all foundered or become extremely and deplorably dependent on pharmaceutical companies. I would be very much saddened if CHI withdrew such efforts as despite all the advances from the internet, access to online journals, webinars etc, the level of medical education and the value placed on allied health professionals (namely, physiotherapists, dieticians and psychologists) by so many countries remains woefully poor.
Dr Mark Rosenthal, Consultant Respiratory Physician.
As you can see from our website, CHI has been active in many countries ranging from Russia and Ukraine, all the Baltic States to a small country such as Moldova and continues to be active now in Russia, Bulgaria and Greece. It is fair to say that we have helped raise the standards of CF healthcare everywhere we have operated - thanks mostly to the splendid efforts of UK CF centre medical personnel.
In turn, it has been common for the same UK personnel to learn from their visits abroad how "the other half" lives. We have worked too with (CF) parent support groups, not used in Soviet times to lobbying for either a better healthcare system or for effective medications - though the greatest advantage of these PSGs is probably mutual support.
Although we have occasionally encountered a similar German organisation to CHI, CHI is indeed unique in offering both hands on practical training but also time in UK for professional development, provided the person has adequate competence in English.
In some of our partner countries, few patients with CF reach adulthood - so most of our focus is on children - what can be more rewarding than helping children remain healthy or, if sick, to help them get well?
The parents of a CF child have very little respite from the care of the child, probably giving the child physiotherapy to keep the lungs clear 2-3 times a day - our visits to their countries cheer them up and they are glad to welcome 'Brit expertise" given with a smile!