US school children join in campaign to fund the Holy Family Hospital in Bethlehem
The “Bottles for Bethlehem” initiative launched by the diocese of Phoenix, Arizona, is gathering together students of the local Catholic schools in an original joint fund-raising effort. Lots of small pink and blue baby bottles are being topped with donations to help mothers and newborns in the Holy Family Hospital in Bethlehem, the maternity hospital managed the Sovereign Order of Malta which stands just a few thousand feet away from the Nativity Church.
With over 3,200 deliveries each year, the Holy Family Hospital is a beacon of hope in a land of desperation and offers the one and only medical facility in the area for high risk pregnancies. This year, it marked an increase of 25% in the number of patients receiving medical care at its premises.
The hospital has also extended the outreach mobile clinic service to the surrounding rural areas, often lacking running water, electricity and basic sanitation, so as to include besides maternal and new born care, paediatric assistance to children up to one and a half years.
The Bottles for Bethlehem campaign formally kicked off at the beginning of December, when students of some schools in Phoenix watched a short documentary on the Holy Family Hospital and will continue throughout the Christmas season.