A Mother's Legacy: Celebrating Mrs Julie Haastrup at 80!
With the Compelling Personal Story of CoMUI’s Latest Platinum Donor,
Funmilayo Haastrup Macaulay MD, FACOG, MBBS Class of 87
It was certainly a bright and beautiful day on 26th July 2023, as I received a message from my teacher in Medical School, who is also the President of the Ibadan College of Medicine Alumni Association Worldwide (ICOMAA-WW), Professor Emmanuel Otolorin, about a Platinum Level donation from Funmilayo Haastrup Macaulay MD, FACOG, CoMUI MBBS Class of 87 in support of our Students’ Hostel Building Project. A few moments later, I also received information from Dr. Modupe Sokunbi, Vice President of ICOMAA North America about this donation. When I reached out to Dr. Haastrup Macaulay, I had no idea there was more to learn about the donation made. Little did I know that this act of generosity would unravel a heartwarming narrative of familial devotion, triumph over adversity, and the enduring power of a mother's love.
How did it start?
I sent the email below to acknowledge and appreciate Dr. Macaulay Haastrup for her donation:
Dear Dr. Haastrup,
I received information from our teacher Professor Otolorin that you have donated $12,500USD (Platinum level donation). This has come at a time of great need, and we are truly grateful.
In order to encourage others and also give our students the opportunity to learn from the lives of great alumni, we feature our platinum donors by releasing their profiles or a story about them.
I will be really grateful if you would permit us to feature you.
I would really like to speak to you and work with you to develop a great story that would inspire others. I look forward to hearing from you.
Hi Dr. Omigbodun,
Thank you for your kind email and I am eternally grateful to God for the opportunity to show my gratitude in this way.
I am happy to speak with you next week if you’re available. I am currently on my way to celebrate my mother’s birthday with our family so I will have availability once things have settled.
Looking forward to connecting soon.
Funmilayo Macaulay MD, FACOG.
I also received this brief message exchange:
From Dr. Macaulay
I made a one-time donation of $12500 today 7/26/23 in honor of my beautiful mother’s 80th birthday, without whom I won’t be who I am today. This donation is in thanksgiving to God for giving her the blessing of life to see her 80th Birthday and to the College of Medicine Ibadan. My parent’s love and support gave me, a teenage mother, the strength, and tenacity to graduate medical school.
I was so emotional I wrote the wrong email. Can I have an acknowledgment of receipt sent to my correct email?
I requested her to compose a tribute in honour of her mother, and she kindly obliged by sharing her heartfelt story.
Tribute to my mother, Mrs. Julie Haastrup
On the recent 80th birthday of my mother, I would like to pay tribute to Mrs. Julie Haastrup. Born in Tiko Cameroon, my mother married a young, handsome Yoruba Prince who was working as an accountant in Tiko at the age of 17. Together, they built a family of six children, moving from Tiko to Jos, then to Lagos. Despite only having a primary school education, my mother was a self-taught tailor and teacher who made all our clothes and taught us how to read and write before we started school. She even learned how to speak two of the three major Nigerian languages, Hausa, and Yoruba.
Despite facing sociocultural and emotional challenges as a foreigner married to a Yoruba man, my mother persevered and stood by us, her children, through everything we did. She believed that we would achieve all the higher education she could not, and she never gave up on us.
When I became pregnant at 17, my parents and siblings supported me through all the negative talk and street gossip. Despite being disappointed, my mother did what she knew best, defend and support. After my son was born, I realized the reality of being a teenage mother and wife, but I refused to give up on my dreams. With my mother's help, I was able to go back to school and pursue my dream of becoming a doctor. I graduated from the College of Medicine at the University of Ibadan, and today I am a board-certified Ob/Gyn physician in Chicago.
My mother's sacrifice and support were instrumental in helping me achieve my dreams, and I am forever grateful. As she celebrates her 80th birthday, I honor her by donating to the projects of the College of Medicine at the University of Ibadan, where I received the education and training to fulfill my aspirations. I hope my tribute to my mother will inspire others to donate to this worthy cause.
I am proud to be the daughter of Mrs. Julie Haastrup, and I thank God for keeping her alive to see her 80th birthday surrounded by her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.
Funmilayo Haastrup Macaulay MD, FACOG UCH Class of 87
I was touched reading her tribute. As a child and adolescent mental health professional, I understand the complexities of human relationships and the significance of family values on young people. I know firsthand the immense impact that maternal love and unwavering support can have on a child's trajectory, shaping their resilience and determination even in the face of daunting challenges. It could be the very thing that makes a difference in their lives.
I had the privilege of speaking with Dr. Macaulay and I was touched by her vulnerability surrounding the challenges she faced and the support she received in weathering that storm at a young age. The sacrifices made by Mrs. Julie Haastrup to provide her daughter with a foundation of security and encouragement even during a situation that would have put an end to her education changed her trajectory. This story resonates on a deeply personal level. It reinforces the profound responsibility and privilege of guiding future generations, instilling values, and nurturing aspirations. It serves as a touching reminder of the relationship between parental stability and personal well-being, and how strong family bonds could be the defining difference for any child. The dedication of Mrs. Haastrup, alongside her daughter's remarkable journey is a timely reminder of the relationships that shape our lives, and how, through the power of love and perseverance, we can surmount even the most challenging circumstances.
This is the legacy of a dear mother whose support for her daughter from teenage motherhood to medical triumph, reminds us of the lasting impact that a mother's love can have, echoing through generations.
That teenage mom who almost dropped out of school is now a Platinum Donor honouring her mother for standing by her. How powerful is a mother's love!
Therefore, on behalf of the entire staff, students, and alumni of the College of Medicine, University of Ibadan (CoMUI), I extend my warm birthday wishes to Grandma Julie Haastrup and pray for continued strength to celebrate more milestones, with her family, in good health and happiness. Amen.
Enjoy your scented moments, Mama!
Professor of Psychiatry and Provost, CoMUI.