Tent at Retreat hospital a saving grace for patients

The tent which has been put up at Retreat hospital.

Two men who saw a need at Retreat Community Health Centre (CHC) helped the facility by erecting a tent to protect patients from the elements.

Patients at the centre were waiting outside the building where they were first screened for Covid-19 and were then assisted according to the facility’s triage system.

Pastor Peter Solomons and Franklyn Dennison realised the need for a tent to protect patients against the sun, cold and rainy weather and donated the tent to be used at the facility.

Mr Solomons, who has the House of Destiny Community Church in Steenberg, was approached by Retreat CHC management, ward councillor Marita Petersen and community leader Mark Solomons about the possibility of renting a tent to cover the outside waiting area for the facility.

“I went to the hospital and saw the people, especially elderly people, sitting on the benches outside without coverage and knew we had to do something.

“I don’t own a tent but I made a couple of calls and someone wanted to charge them a ridiculous amount of money. I then made another call to a friend of mine, Franklyn Dennison and asked him for his help and that there is no budget for the tent,” said Mr Solomons.

He said it was an ideal way for the church community to help. “What better way to serve your community and play an important role, especially in the crisis we are going through. We cannot preach and have church ,so we are trying to help in other ways and this is one of the ways we could,” said Mr Solomons.

Mr Dennison said when he drove past the facility and saw patients standing and sitting outside he felt sorry for them.

“I have the tent for my church, the Westlake Worship Centre in Westlake, but we are not able to have church services. We usually charge R1 000 a day to hire the tent but i understand that the hospital was not able to give money, so I decided to let them use it for free to help those who come to the facility. I am happy that I was able to assist in this way,”said Mr Dennison.