Next Sunday evening (January 6th) there is a fundraising cabaret evening being held at The Kitchen Garden Café, York Road, Kings Heath.
The evening will include music, poetry and comedy, and the show starts at 7pm. Artists include Roger Cliffe-Thompson, Rich McMahon, Red Bird Sky, Naomi Paul,the Sound Foundation, Simon Pitt, and Bob Gessey.
The purpose of the evening is to raise funds for the Moxafrica Charity. Moxafrica is West Midlands based but works in Uganda and South Africa in the desperate fight to combat TB in Africa. The charity is investigating whether a low-tech traditional treatment from East Asia called “moxa” might treat TB in Africa. “Moxa”, a cheap and simple immune-enhancing treatment was used with documentary evidence of success in both China and Japan in the years before the advent of TB drugs in the 1940s. It is hypothesized that it might prove uniquely appropriate as a viable treatment where pharmaceutical and financial resources are totally inadequate to fight the disease.
The TB epidemic in parts of Southern Africa is now effectively out of control. The situation is desperately complicated when there are high rates of co-infection with HIV/AIDS, and there are now increasing rates of untreatable drug-resistant disease as well. Incidence rates of TB in some countries (notably Swaziland and South Africa) are almost certainly the highest in human history, and they rise across the continent year on year. Africa is in desperate need of an appropriate and affordable resource to fight this growing threat.
Moxafrica is currently working closely with Uganda’s famous Makerere University’s School of Health Sciences in Kampala, with a Phase II Randomised Control Trial in progress to scientifically investigate treatment outcomes with moxa in 180 TB patients.
Merlin Young, a Birmingham acupuncturist who is co-founder of the charity, is convinced that “if the results of this study reflect the responses we’ve seen in the three pilots studies we’ve run in South Africa and Uganda, this could really turn out to be one of the most astonishing and unexpected stories in twenty-first century medicine, and could quite seriously have positive impact on millions of lives. The funds raised from this event are going to help us complete the study.”
Brett Rehling, the managing director of the Kitchen Garden Café is generously hosting the event free of charge for the benefit of the charity.
There is a lot of background information about the Moxafrica charity, about the treatment, about TB and the challenges facing those treating the disease in Africa on the website www.moxafrica.org.