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19th Jan, 2022

Former NHS doctor from Solihull handed OBE for work in India

Sarah Mason 5th Jan, 2022

A SOLIHULL children’s doctor has named in the New Year’s Honours list for her life-changing charity work in India.

Dr Mary Cusack alongside her colleague Dr Cat Morris, have been handed an OBE for services to Healthcare and Child Welfare in the country.

The pair worked in India for 15 years and set up the charity Love The One five years after arriving.

The charity provides free and safe day care, education and healthcare for those living in the state of Odisha, East India

Dr Cusack said: “We spent the first few years in India dealing with children suffering the heartbreaking effects of poverty and poor healthcare.

“We cared for children who had been sex trafficked, children eeking out an existence on rubbish dumps and those that had been in child labour or left daily for hours on end in horrendous conditions as their parents tried to make a living to survive.

“Through these experiences the holistic concept of ‘Love the One’ was born.”

Through Love The One young children enrol in a day centre where they are cared for, fed and critically learn to play and some health needs are treated without charge.

Children with physical disabilities and other additional needs attend the Children’s Therapy Centre where therapy, care and fun are provided.

Love The One also runs free community paediatric clinics for the most impoverished communities providing children with access to healthcare from primary through to tertiary care, completely free of charge.

Dr Cusack said “Our incredible team are from all walks of life but together we aspire to live by a set of core values and work together every day in a united vision to see the poverty cycle interrupted in this generation.

“Having pity for people in poverty doesn’t bring change.

“Walking alongside families, showing love in practical action, brings transformation.”

Dr Morris and Dr Cusack’s paths then crossed whilst studying for a diploma in Tropical Medicine and Hygiene at the University of Liverpool.

The pair then specialised in paediatrics, becoming Members of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, and then made the life-changing decision to leave the NHS and move to India.

A spokesperson for the Foreign Commonwealth and Development office said “Through their work, Dr Cusack and Dr Morris have saved and transformed lives, delivered hope through selfless voluntary service and brought great credit to the UK.”

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