Our latest visit to our partners.

Five of the Jamies Fund trustees headed for Uganda in mid-September for a Professional Development workshop for 30 Mental Health Staff from our partner hospitals across the country.  This was followed by visits to some of our partner hospital. Travel was much easier than it was early last year, when there were the Covid restrictions and requirements to follow. The atmosphere in Uganda generally seemed more buoyant too, and Kampala was bustling (unpleasantly so at times, in the choked traffic!).  For the first time since 2017, Avril, the mother of little Jamie who died, came with us, which touched the hearts of many people there. 

As trustees, we have been wrestling with the difficult decision of when to close the charity. Our involvement has grown from a partnership with one hospital, to a network of 25 hospitals and Health Centres. We knew that our support was making a significant difference. But as a small group in this corner of the UK, we could not keep the fundraising efforts here, and the support there, going for ever. 

We had always hoped that others would step up to take our places in the UK organisation, but that hasn’t happened. So we’ve been working to ensure that our partners had the opportunity to roll out training for staff and community leaders this year, and to strengthen their services. Also, the seven staff we sponsored to train as Psychiatric Clinical Officers will all have qualified by the end of 2023. It was time to talk of handing over to our friends and colleagues in Uganda. 

It felt important to be able to share this in person, and to be able to work it out together. It was emotional for all of us. What was really inspiring, was the way in which almost all our Ugandan colleagues responded with a commitment to continue to build on what had been started. Within 12 hours, the staff at the conference had put together a plan for a nationwide mental health network, to support each other and advocate for mental health care. 

At The Epicentre.

As we travelled west and east to meet the hospital managers and mental health staff in partner hospitals, that same commitment was repeated in various ways. At Kisiizi Hospital, where Jamie’s Fund  had begun, management asked, ‘What should the hospital pick up, as we plan our budgets?’ and Bwindi stated, ‘Mental health now has a big place in our day to day operations. The impact will continue.’ 

At a hospital near the equator, we met Village Health Team volunteers and recovering patients, who tell people in the villages that mental ill health can be treated. Elsewhere, a newly qualified psychiatric clinical officer took us to her first ever outreach clinic at a ‘nearby’ (it wasn’t!) Health Centre where over 20 people had turned up in the rain because they’d heard her announce the clinic and talk about mental health on local radio. At other hospitals, staff with the basic mental health training were evident in every department. 

Waiting at the clinic

Finally, the peer-led, volunteer-supported therapeutic community, The Epicentre, which had taken us by surprise last year, surprised us again. They now accommodate nearly 50 people recovering from mental ill health and addictions. They have moved out from the rented building and have built on a nearby piece of land, with space for exercise and activities. It feels peaceful and safe. When people are able, they help out by taking up a role in the centre, such as cook, or receptionist, and contribute a little towards their keep if they can. The Archbishop and the District Health Officer, as well as the nearby hospital, support them with donations of food, funds, transport and medication. Everyone – including the Archbishop – is turning out for a parade through town on World Mental Health Day to challenge stigma and promote a positive message about mental health!

Once we have met all our existing commitments, the charity will formally close at the end of 2023, but I don’t think we will be allowed to lose touch with our friends and former partners in Uganda … nor would we wish to!

Linda Shuttleworth

Season’s Greetings

It has been a busy year for Jamie’s Fund and time has flown since I visited Kisiizi in April.

I recently met with the Cheshire and Wirral Partnership team who had not long returned from Kisiizi and had undertaken some great work there with the staff at Kisiizi Hospital. The team, headed by  Dr Niall Campbell, included Joanna Holland and Dee Brace, both Nurse Practitioners in Early Intervention, Dr Unwana Etta and  Jenny Milburn, Specialist OT . They have some very compelling stories of their week there and we hope to bring you some of these in the New Year.

There has been a lot of activity in Fundraising with Brian, our Community Fundraiser organisiing events to take place in 2015 and strengthening our links with Chester University and their 175th Anniversary Fundraising Campaign.  In addition, the Buy a Brick Campaign continues and if any of you have unwanted gifts at Christmas please let Brian know as he will be happy to sell them on Ebay for you with all proceeds going to Jamie’s Fund. Please do keep an eye on our Facebook page and website for updates on forthcoming events.

We are planning a media campaign in January and hope to raise the profile of Jamie’s Fund early in the new year through local and hopefully some national, media. We will annonce any publicity via the website in advance if possible to make sure you don’t miss our story in the press.

As we end the year, I would like to thank all those who have and continue to raise funds or have made donations to Jamie’s Fund. The time, effort and generosity  put into raising money is hugely appreciated by all at Jamie’s Fund. Every penny takes us a step nearer to the new Mental Health Centre in Kisiizi. Thank you.

I wish you all a peaceful Christmas and a happy and healthy 2015.

Best wishes


CEO Latest News

It’s been a busy couple of weeks here at Jamie’s Fund and you may notice some changes to our website recently.

Hugh Burgess, who you will recognise as one of Jamie’s Fund Trustees, has been working very hard behind the scenes to improve our new website so it looks even better and is easier to use. He is also establishing ‘Jamie’s Shop’ which will enable you to buy Jamie’s Fund merchandise such as sweatshirts and t shirts through the website. We hope to have this up and running in plenty of time for you to make purchases for Christmas.

We are really pleased to have appointed Dr Brian Larsen as our new Community Fundraiser and he already has some great ideas to get people involved in Jamie’s Fund and help raise funds towards Phase One of the new Mental Health Inpatient Unit at Kisiizi Hospital. Brian will be developing fundraising projects which we hope you will get involved in and he will also be working closely with the University of Chester to help them raise funds in their 175th Anniversary year. Keep an eye on the website because Brian will be letting you know about his exciting projects very soon. If you have any fundraising ideas or would like some support in your own fundraising efforts, Brian he can be contacted on 07884 406440 or at brian.larsen@jamiesfund.org.uk .  He will be delighted to speak with you.

I met with Ann Bryan, Associate Dean Business and Enterprise at the University of Chester, and Avril Devaney in her role as Director of Nursing, Therapies and Patient Partnership to talk about ways the University, Cheshire and Wirral Partnership NHS Foundation Trust and Jamie’s Fund can work together to develop greater support for the staff providing mental health care at Kiiizi. We will be working on these plans over the next few months and will keep you informed of progress.

Please remember to register with Easyfundraising before you start your online Christmas shopping that way Jamie’s Fund will recieve a percentage of your spend as a donation from the retailer. It really is ‘money for nothing’! You can register at www.easyfundraising.org.uk

Please get in touch if you have any fundraising news you would like to share with us  – it would be lovely to hear from you.

Best wishes




CEO Latest News

I was interested this week to read about the work East London NHS Foundation are undertaking in Butabika in Uganda with Psychiatric Clinical Officers. They are also working in partnership with the government psychaitric hospitals in many other aspects of mental health care which is similar to the work Cheshire and Wirral Partnership NHS Foundation Trust are doing currently with staff at Kisiizi.  To find out more visit their website at www.butabikalondon.com

I ‘Tweeted’ last week that staff from CWP were leaving for a trip to Kisizi to provide training and support to staff  and share best practice. All at Jamie’s Fund are eagerly awaiting their return to hear about their experiences.

We will soon be adding some new pages to our website. We hope to be selling some merchandise to help raise funds in the run up to Christmas. We will also be adding a page to acknowledge organisitaions who have provided Jamie’s Fund with support or services during our development and adding some links to other useful websites. So watch this space!

If you would like us to advertise or just mention your fundraising event please get in touch with me on 01625 439430 and we can talk about how that can be achieved.

Best Wishes



CEO Latest News

This is my first post on the website as Chief Executive of Jamie’s Fund even though I have been working with the Trustees since April. It has been a busy 6 months but you may wonder what has been going on!

There has been a lot of work ‘behind the scenes’ by the Trustees and myself developing the plans for the building of the new mental health unit in Kisiizi, updating the website, applying for funding and working on the future direction of Jamie’ Fund.

We feel it is now even more important than ever to publicise the work of Jamie’s Fund to a wider audience to increase  awareness of mental health issues in Uganda and to help us raise vital funds to enable us to fulfill our pledge to build the the new unit. It is amazing how much has been raised  by supporters of Jamie’sFund – £58,000 so far – but we need to keep going!

If you have any ideas for fundraising or are a member of a group or club who you think might be interested in hearing more about the work of Jamie’s Fund, please get in touch. We can help support you to develop your fundraising ideas into a successful event and also come and talk in person about the work of Jamie’s Fund. Please contact me  on 01625 439430 or email fiona.clark@jamiesfund.org.uk and I will be happy to talk through how we can help.

I will be keeping you up to date with news from Jamie’s Fund via this page on the website and we hope to develop a newsletter soon to send out to all our supporters. If you have any news regarding Jamie’s Fund or fundraising events you wish to tell us about or publicise on the website just let me know  – I’ll be happy to help.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Best wishes