Our Story

Hope Clinic


The first trip

The first Mission Rwentobo trip to Uganda, led by Gordon Miller, took place in 2014.  The main purpose was to support World Shine primary school, situated in rural SW Uganda. Over 500 children attended the school , 200 of whom were boarders.

The school had a very small sick bay at the time which was poorly equipped, with nothing but a grubby mattress on the floor where sick children could rest.

We talked to Medad Birungi about creating a better sick bay but he explained that part of the vision for World Shine Ministries was to eventually create a  clinic for the whole community, who had no access to health care nearby at the time.

Very few people in this community own a bike, let alone a car so this is a major barrier to good health

Connie Burgess and I realised that, in order to provide good healthcare a clinic would need to be linked to a facility with experience.

We identified Kisiizi Hospital, a Church of Uganda Mission Hospital about 50 minsup rough mountains roads from Rwentobo. This hospital is recognised by WHO for exemplary care to the rural poor.

Dr Ian Spillman, who was then the medical superintendent at Kisiizi and he agreed to take our request to the board.

Kisiizi Hospital in Uganda | Hope Clinic (Mission Rentobo)

The other advantage of linking with Kisiizi was that the Rwentobo community would have access to the KHIS. This means that, for a very small annual premium, families can have access to very heavily subsidised acute healthcare and maternity care.

We were delighted when the Kisiizi board agreed that clinical supervision could be provided to the clinic, with staff being trained and allocated by them.

Fundraising to build and equip the clinic began.


Continuing trips

Mission Rwentobo continued to send groups over to support the school and in 2016, whilst on a community visit, Connie Burgess found baby Pauline,who was obviously suffering severe malnutrition, in one of the dwellings

Kisiizi Hospital was contacted and the child, who was actually 18mths old, was found to weigh only 5.5kg.

Kisiizi agreed to use their Samaritan fund, which provides fees for those who really cannot afford it, to treat Pauline.

Malnourished baby at Hope Clinic, Rwentobo, Uganda | Mission Rwentobo

A few months later Pauline was looking much healthier having benefitted from the Kisiizi special feed formula.

Her mother was advised about good nutrition on a low income and Pauline was discharged.

If this mother had been able to access healthcare closer to home, Pauline may never have become so close to death.

This spurred us on with the fund raising for the clinic and for a similar“Samaritan” fund for the Rwentobo community.

Recovery of malnourished baby at Hope Clinic, Rwentobo, Uganda | Mission Rwentobo

At last the building commenced on land backing onto World Shine primary school and facing the main street in Rwentobo.

Foundation of the Hope Clinic being built in Rwentobo, Uganda | Mission Rwentobo

Using local builders and local techniques, the structure took form.

Hope Clinic Rwentobo, Uganda being built | Mission Rwentobo

The opening

In May 2019, a small group of us were able to pay a brief visit to join the community in celebrating the opening of the clinic.

Hope Clinic Opening in Rwentobo, Uganda | Mission Rwentobo

As the children returned to school, they now had the benefit of a small ward within the clinic where they could be treated when unwell.

This is the path which links the school to the clinic.

Kids returning to see the new Hope Clinic Rwentobo, Uganda | Mission Rwentobo

Mission Rwentobo havecontinued to fund improvements to the clinic, including solar power and large rain water collection tanks.

The original rather steep ramp access has been improved and outdoor latrines and acooking area have been constructed for the use of the night guard and family ofpatients who are admitted.

Hope Clinic Rwentobo, Uganda | Mission Rwentobo

This photo shows the front view of the clinic and the outdoor sheltered seating to the side.

Hope Clinic in 2022 - Rwentobo, Uganda | Mission Rwentobo


The clinic is currently staffed 24/7 by a team of just 8 people. From left to right:

  • Shallon, enrolled comprehensive nurse
  • Miracle, Night guard
  • Brenda, Enrolled nurse
  • Martha, Registered Nurse
  • Dianah, nurse assistant
  • Abel, the lab technician
  • Jusutus, cleaner and proter
  • Julius, Clinical Officer in Charge.

Kato Julius has been the Clinical Officer in charge of the clinic for the last year. He is an excellent team leader, motivating the team to continue the ethos of Kisiizi Hospital, which is to enable the community to "Live life in all its fullness." He has reached out to the community to create more groups who can benefit from the Kisiizi Health Insurance Scheme so there are now 50 families with a total of 574 members who can now access very low cost health care at the clinic. World Shine Primary school (789 clients) and Ntungamo Girls High School (892 clients) also invest in the scheme so that the children who attend the school can attend the clinic when they are unwell. From January to June 2023 60% of patients seen at the clinic were in the insurance scheme.

Nurse Martha has been working at the clinic since it opened in 2019 and before that she was the school nurse for World Shine Primary School. Thanks to generous sponsorship from Mission Rwentobo supporters, she was able to do further training at Kisiizi Hospital to upgrade to Registered Diploma Nurse. Trustees, Debbie and Mick Burke, had the privilege of attending her graduation ceremony at Kisiizi Hospital in September 2023. She asked us to pass on her gratitude and appreciation for all the support given.

One of the big successes of the clinic is being accepted by the district health officer as a suitable clinic for providing childhood immunisations.

This means that a gas fuelled vaccine fridge and regular vaccine deliveries have been received by the clinic, fully funded by the government.  

A busy weekly vaccination clinic now runs every Wednesday.  These clinics often take place in the covered outside area and Nurse Martha gives a health education talk before the vaccinations are given. This talk was on breastfeeding.

Thanks to onsite laboratory facilities, our lab technician, Abel, is able to examine blood, urine and stool samples in order to identify causes of disease.  

From January to August 2023, 1,986 samples were analysed and same day reports were made available to enable ongoing treatment to be decided.

Thanks to funds raised through a sponsored paddle-boarding event in August 2023, Kisiiizi Hospital were able to recruit a new Clinical Officer to support Julius. Following two weeks induction at Kisiizi, Helen moved to Hope Community Clinic mid October 2023. This is a real blessing as numbers of patients have greatly increased this year and there will now be two clinical officers available to assess the patients and advise re treatment.

Other services which the clinic provides include family planning, antenatal and postnatal care.This picture is on the wall at Kisiizi hospital and shows a midwife using a sonicaid to listen to baby’s heart beat.
Family planning services are also provided, including long-acting reversible contraception such as coils and implants.

Mural at Kisiizi | Mission Rwentobo

An ultrasound scanner has also been purchased in September 2023 so that more detailed scans can be done and any possible complications in pregnancy can be detected. This was one step toward plans to extend maternity services to include the delivery of babies, which has been recommended by the District Health Officer in order for the clinic to attain full Health Centre III status. The community have been requesting this for a long time due to the risks faced by mothers giving birth in unsafe conditions in the village. Thanks to generous sponsorship, our current enrolled midwife, Brenda, is training at Kisiizi to upgrade to registered midwife and an extra enrolled midwife will join the team. The clinic will be modified to provide a delivery room and maternity ward and a placenta pit, incinerator and waste storage shed will be added outside.

Rushooka Maternity unit is a catholic facility which is about a half hour drive from the clinic. They have agreed to accept mothers who are found to have high risk pregnancies and can also send an ambulance for mothers who have complications in labour. If all these things are put in place, the safe delivery of babies at Hope Community Clinic can at last commence. Prayers are needed for the funding for this project.

The numbers of patients seen at the clinic for acute health issues in increasing and the busiest day is Friday which is market day so there are many people in the area. Patients are triaged by a nurse and then referred to a clinical officer who may request lab tests to confirm a diagnosis. If medicines are required they can be obtained from the onsite dispensary.

As Ntungamo Girls High School and World Shine Primary school children are covered by the Kisiizi Health Insurance Scheme, the clinic receives frequent visits from children who are unwell. During the rainy season, malaria is often a problem and here Clinical Officer, Julius, is giving one of the girls intravenous therapy for malaria.


An excellent software system called “Stre@mline” was developed at Kisiizi Hospital to ensure good health records are kept and correct medicines issued.   The entire patient journey from triage, to treatment, to discharge is recorded using this system. If medicines are required the software is used to print out instructions to the patients in their local language.

Debbie and Mick Burke spent one week at the clinic in September 2023 to support and encourage the clinic team on behalf of Mission Rwentobo. Highlights for them were joining the team for early morning prayer and sung worship in the dispensary and the farewell celebration at the end of the week, when a traditional dance from this region was spontaneously performed by the team. The African singing and joy expressed were so uplifting. Debbie also enjoyed helping to vaccinate the babies  and Mick got busy painting interior walls.

24/7 care is provided on an emergency basis when really necessary. Patients are admitted to the small onsite wards for medical care on a short term basis, often for malaria or pneumonia.

Mission Rwentobo contributed towards new bed linen and covers for the beds. Apophia, shown here with her baby, teaches tailoring at World Shine Primary School and made the sheets and pillow cases shown here.

The children of World Shine Primary School will always have a special place in the hearts of all those linked to Mission Rwentobo. We are so thankful that the vision to provide them with better health care has been fulfilled. But it is not just the children who are served by Hope Community Clinic as it now brings HOPE to the whole community.

The Rwentobo community survive mainly on subsistence farming and it is often the women and children who are seen in the fields. Mission Rwentobo are so grateful for the prayer and financial support which enables the clinic to continue reach out to those in need so that maternal and childhood mortality can be reduced .

Tonbridge Baptist Church and friends were very faithful in providing the funds for the clinic, as is acknowledged in this plaque as people enter the building.
Dr Ian Spillman was then instrumental in providing ongoing support and spiritual encouragement to the team for the first 4 years. He has now returned to live in the UK after 10 years service to Kisiizi but he continues to act as a link between Mission Rwentobo and Kisiizi.
We were so grateful that, in 2023, the board of Kisiizi hospital agreed to continue supervision and support for the clinic.

'Built and equipped by Tonbridge Baptist Church' Plaque at Hope Clinic - Rwentobo, Uganda | Mission Rwentobo
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