Press release: Student paramedic set for Cameroon charity quest

Student para Michael Holgate in Cameroon

A student paramedic is set to swap the east of England for central Africa as part of a charity quest.

Michael Holgate is looking forward to a holiday with a difference later this month when he travels again to a remote part of northern Cameroon to help open and staff a new health clinic.

The 45-year-old, who has been volunteering with charity AidCamps International for the last eight years, will spend three weeks helping to improve the health of people living in Dom.

The former corporate banker joined the East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust (EEAST) in September and is based at Peterborough.

Over the years Michael has been involved in building two schools, a clinic, and several wells as well as female empowerment, cooperatives and ecology work. He said his volunteering and charity work in Cameroon had played a pivotal role in his career change.

“I was working in a bank and working very hard and earning a good wage. After a bit of a midlife crisis I thought there was more to life. I went out there and it opened my eyes as to what the rest of the world is like. The areas we go to are hundreds of miles from anywhere – there is no clean water or sanitation and there is no technology.”

Michael will spend three weeks annual leave by working alongside a nurse in a new clinic. In addition to fundraising for the clinic he has provided funds for a new water well.

He has raised more than £30,000 for the charity through a variety of fundraising events including running marathons and climbing the Himalayas, and said he hopes to return every year to volunteer at health centres as his clinical skills progress.

“The work I have done in Cameroon over the last eight years has been central in my giving up my previous career and joining the Trust. I love the job, the role is varied and far reaching the people I work with are excellent.

“It is a real pleasure working alongside people that care about what they do and the people they serve is a real pleasure to work alongside. To do the job is an honour and a privilege.”

For more information and to sponsor Michael, visit

Published 25th March 2015 

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