The Robert Burns International Foundation has been fundraising for children’s hospitals in Hungary since 1998. The very first piece of equipment donated was an operating table, which was gifted to the 2nd Department of Paediatrics at Semmelweis University in Tűzoltó utca. The RBIF has continued this assistance every year since then.

We support other hospitals as well but why have we given continuous annual support to this hospital? The main reason is that the Tűzoltó utca hospital is one of the principal children’s hospitals not just in Budapest but for the whole of Hungary. Children needing special treatment are often transferred here from other hospitals, so it makes sense to help ensure this hospital has the equipment needed to offer the best available support for sick children in Hungary. This assistance is made possible as ever by our Burns Supper sponsors, and in 2022 our main sponsors included @bp, @Taxually and @FirstMed.

In conjunction with our medical adviser Professor György Fekete, former medical director of the 2nd Dept. of Paediatrics, this year we helped the department purchase a vitally important vital signs monitor along with pressure-relieving mattresses.

The Connex Spot Monitor features an easy-to-use, vivid touchscreen display and provides accurate vital signs measurement including blood pressure averaging, spot checking and interval monitoring. The device includes a choice of thermometry and/or pulse oximetry, connectivity and mounting/mobility options, providing up to 17 hours of on-time, alleviating the need to charge the monitor as frequently.

The Alerta Emerald Auto is a fully automatic weight-sensing, pressure-relieving mattress system with 5″ air cells for effective prevention and treatment of patients at high risk of developing pressure ulcers during long-term hospital stays. The pump has the latest cutting-edge auto weight-sensing technology, continuously adjusting interface pressures according to the patient’s weight.


This visit to the hospital also gave us the chance to properly thank Professor Fekete for his 25 years of medical advisory support he has given the RBIF. In recognition of his efforts he was declared our “Sponsor of the Year.”

For many years now as part of our SME Sponsorship Scheme, and in collaboration with FirstMed Centers, the Robert Burns International Foundation has supported the Infant and Paediatric Department at the Szent Rafael Hospital in Zalaegerszeg.

This hospital not only functions as a health-care institution for the 60,000 people who live in this town situated in the south-west of Hungary in Zala county. It is also the main hospital for the surrounding area, and accepts patients from throughout western Hungary, and even from across Hungary’s borders.

In 2022, after consultation with the team of doctors at the hospital, the decision was made to purchase a Nihon Kohden multi-functional Life Scope bedside monitor. This monitor is able to track and display many crucial parameters of a patient’s health, including the carbon-dioxide content of exhaled air.

What makes this monitor particularly special is that it carries a smaller integrated portable monitor that can be removed when the baby or child needs transporting to other areas of the hospital for treatment. This makes such movements much safer and allows the medical staff to keep them under full observation even when they are outside the ward.


Linking up once again with Norhot Kft. in 2022 as part of the SME Sponsorship Scheme, the Robert Burns International Foundation reached out to the Peter Cerny Foundation, well-known in Budapest for operating a fleet of well-equipped ambulances serving the needs of premature babies. Based in Budapest, this year the owners of Norhot Kft. wanted to support a project in the capital city, after previously helping to fund medical equipment in Székesfehérvár.

Following discussions with the foundation’s coordinator Barnabás Lendvai, the RBIF funded various pieces of equipment to keep the ambulances well stocked. The neonatal nitric oxide dosing and sampling kit will enable the ventilation of newborn babies with very severe respiratory failure. These single-use devices can be used to deliver nitric oxide molecules into a mixture of medical oxygen and compressed air, opening up diseased lung vessels and enabling effective ventilatory support for babies for whom conventional ventilation is ineffective.

The boxes of adhesive plasters and cannula clamps enable the attachment of a wide range of medical equipment (tube, probes, catheters, cannulas), while lancets for blood testing enable nurses to collect blood efficiently for the portable blood gas analyser and blood glucose meter.

The RBIF funded pads to be placed under each premature or sick newborn baby in the incubator, ensuring a clean, safe and comfortable environment. The bionector can be used to administer 3 types of medicine at the same time, while the umbilical catheters are used for umbilical cannulation, allowing for the safe delivery of medicine directly into the main blood stream.

With the Nellcor sensors and cables, the babies’ vital signs can be continuously monitored on the patient monitor, and finally, with the etCO2 cables it is possible to measure exhaled CO2 during ventilation, which provides very important information for doctors.

All of these items are crucially important to make sure that the ambulances are constantly on the road with the right equipment to make sure the doctors and nurses can take action at the right time, and we are delighted to have made a significant contribution in collaboration with Norhot Kft.

The Robert Burns International Foundation has been supporting the Premature Baby Unit of the Péterfy Sándor Utca Hospital for many years.

This assistance has enabled the doctors and nurses to care for their patients in a safer manner, greatly facilitating their day-to-day work. The neonatal wing is run by Dr Gábor Baross, who with the support of his team can deal with anything between 500 and 600 premature babies every year with a maximum capacity to accommodate 20 to 30 babies at any one time.

This year, Dr. Gábor Boross asked if we could finance the cost of two new baby incubators.

The incubators are an essential tool for the care of premature babies. Babies born prematurely can sometimes spend weeks or months in an incubator, and the environment they provide is extremely important.

“On average, we care for 4,500 premature, sick newborns every year. The vast majority of them are cared for in incubators for varying lengths of time. The department’s
incubator fleet is ageing, and most of them are more than 8-10 years old. In many cases, these old units make it difficult to provide the right environment for premature babies (ideal temperature and humidity, low noise level, etc.). For example, a noisy incubator can even lead to hearing loss in premature babies in the long term.

This is why the Foundation’s donation of two new, efficient and quiet incubators is crucially important to our work.

On behalf of myself and my little patients, thank you for your generous support”
Dr. Gábor Boross

In 2022 as part of our SME Sponsorship Scheme we were delighted to team up with a long-standing partner of ours, WhiskyNet, who have supported the RBIF in its work for many years.

Using money generously raised by WhiskyNet customers with their online purchases, Zsolt Sziget and Kati Szatmári asked if we could help a hospital in the eastern part of the country. Following consultations with the RBIF’s medical adviser Professor György Fekete, we identified the hospital in Mezőtúr as a worthy beneficiary.

Dr. Ferenc Antal runs the paediatric department at this small, well-equipped rural hospital. The wards are comfortable, each with a separate bathroom, toilet and TV, and following discussions with him it transpired that the RBIF could best help if we managed to buy an air-conditioning system.


“Having adequate air conditioning is more comfortable for a sick, feverish child than a warm, airless, humid environment. The RBIF has helped us ensure this by purchasing a modern, high-efficiency cooling and heating air-conditioning unit, which we were able to install in our central corridor so that the air temperature and movement can affect the air in all the wards. It would be ideal to have air conditioning in all wards, but now we have this to our great satisfaction!”, said Antal Ferenc.

The remainder of the donation was used to buy blood pressure cuffs and pulse oximeters, which are essential for the daily care of newborns, as every newborn is required to have four endometrial blood pressure measurements and pulse oximetry monitoring a certain time after their birth.


“It was a pleasure for us to have the RBIF visit our department and to personally thank Mr Douglas Arnott, Chairman of the Robert Burns International Foundation, for his repeated support. We were also able to talk about the support we received ten years ago and were able to have a look at the Pulzox monitor still in daily use in our outpatient clinic, demonstrating that even in such a small rural hospital, there are adequate conditions for the care of young patients.”

The RBIF would like to congratulate and welcome four new members joining the existing members on the Foundation Board. We are grateful and excited to have this group of individuals join us and bring their expertise and perspectives to the work of the foundation to further our goal of helping sick and underprivileged children in Hungary.

We asked the members to introduce themselves and their relationship with the Foundation.


Peter Hajnal – Managing Director (CEO) of Moore Hungary
How did you come across the RBIF?
I met RBIF Chairman Dougie Arnott last year thanks to a recommendation of a mutual friend. Why is it important for you to support the foundation?
There are lots of foundations in operation, but usually you do not know exactly where the support given is used. RBIF has a clear and transparent activity that helps to understand the path of the funds raised. Furthermore, the objective and goal of RBIF (helping sick and underprivileged children in Hungary) are very important and close to my heart.


Robin Marshall – editor-in-chief of the Budapest Business Journal
How did you come across the RBIF?
I arrived in Hungary in 1998 as the managing editor of The Budapest Sun, and while I missed the first Budapest Burns Supper that year, I did attend the second one in 1999. I think I was at every Burns Supper every year from then until we moved out of Budapest in 2007. The Budapest Sun was a media sponsor for the supper while I ran it, and I did pro bono communications work for the foundation for a few years after I left the newspaper in 2008.
Why is it important for you to support the foundation?
Having lived in Hungary for more than 20 years, with a Hungarian wife and three bilingual, dual nationality children, I think it is important to give something back to our community. The RBIF does such outstanding work with sick children, and it is lovely to be involved again with something that I saw develop from its early years.


Alan McGregor works in personal finance
How did you come across the RBIF?
I have been involved in Scottish charities in the past, and have known Douglas personally for more than 20 years.
Why is it important for you to support the foundation?
I think it is a wonderful way to celebrate Scottish culture, far from home, and bring that to a new audience, whilst raising much-needed resources for vital local projects.


Dr. Miklós Moldován – Head of Moldovan & Co Attorneys at Law and managing partner
How did you come across the RBIF?
My father Dr. András Moldován was a member of the board for quite some time. During his involvement with the foundation I attended RBIF fundraisers on many occasions, and also became acquainted to some extent with those running this organisation. Following (or rather creating) the tradition, I was honoured to be asked if I could replace him on the board.
Why is it important for you to support the foundation?
It is fundamental that everyone gives back to the community in some way. I believe the cause the RBIF stands for is of extraordinary importance in the midst of the many other charitable causes that need attention, and so it is my pleasure to pitch in to this common goal to the extent my abilities allow me to do so.


David Thompson – retired Chartered Accountant, a member of the Supervisory Board and Chair of the Audit Committee of the logistics company Waberer’s International Nyrt. since 2018. Before that, KPMG in the UK, the USA and Hungary for over 40 years, and audit partner at KPMG Hungary for 22 years, 1992-2014.
How did you come across the RBIF?
Through attending Burns Suppers since the 1990s.
Why is it important for you to support the foundation?
Firstly, it is a very good cause. RBIF helps hospitals and other institutions deliver much-needed services to newborn babies and disadvantaged children.

Secondly, and this matters to me as a Chartered Accountant, we take great care to ensure all the money everyone gives to RBIF is spent wisely.
– Everyone gives their time and skills for free.
– The Foundation has no employees or administration costs.
– We follow up; we check that the donations we make are spent on buying the equipment approved by us.

Thirdly, I am Scottish and I live in Hungary. I am delighted to support an emblematic Scottish cultural event here, the Burns Supper. Being Scottish and an accountant, I like it that we demonstrate through the Foundation the Scottish virtue of being ‘canny’ – we take good care to look after the money our donors entrust to us, and we ensure their donations are used wisely.

Last but not least, Burns is Scotland’s much loved national poet, very similarly to Petőfi in Hungary. I am lucky enough that at least 2 of my ancestors had personal links with Burns. One of my 4x great grandfathers, John Tennant, was a good friend and neighbour of Robert Burns’ father. John was one of the two witnesses who signed the poet’s birth certificate and much later, was a friend Burns turned to for advice. Burns also wrote a letter poem to one of John’s sons in which he names “Guid Old Glen” and several members of the family. Burns was also a friend of another of my 4x great grandfathers and refers to him in another letter. Small things, but fun associations with the world-famous poet! And they make it personal for me to support Burns ‘Immortal Memory’ through supporting the RBIF here in Hungary.


Dougie Arnott – Owner of EDMF Language Services Kft.
How did you come across the RBIF?
I volunteered to help out with the RBIF back in 2012, little did I know then it would become a significant part of my life. I have been Chairman of the Board since 2014.
Why is it important for you to support the foundation?
There are various pillars to the RBIF’s operations, first and foremost helping sick and underprivileged children in Hungary, a cause that I’m sure everyone thinks is worthy of promoting. Those running the Foundation are privileged simply in terms of enjoying good health and being able to give back to the community we now call home. Given that we are able to provide our support where it is much needed, I feel we have an obligation in this respect. By doing so we also promote cultural links between Scotland, the UK as a whole, and Hungary, equally a worthy objective in our minds.

A few months after our successful 25th Annual Budapest Burns Supper we would like to give you a bit of feedback on the progress we are making with the funds that you all raised in January.

We have identified projects with 6 different beneficiaries around the country, all of which will benefit sick children around Hungary.


The beneficiaries are:

1. Neonatal Department of the Péterfy Sándor utca Hospital, Budapest

2. 2nd Department of Paediatrics, Semmelweis University, Budapest

3. Paediatric Department of Szent Rafael Hospital, Zalaegerszeg

4. Péter Cerny Foundation for Premature Babies, Budapest

5. Paediatric Department of the Csongrád-Csanád County Health Centre, Hódmezővásárhely

6. Infant and Children’s Department at Mezőtúr Hospital, Jász-Nagykun-Szolnok County


Five of these projects have already received the funding from the RBIF, and the much-needed equipment has already been ordered. After finalising the details on the 6th project we hope soon to be able to send that funding too.

Once the hospitals have taken possession of the equipment we will of course provide you with all the details and photos, so you can rest assured that your generosity at the January Burns Supper is being put to the best possible use!

Anyone who has been to a Burns Supper will not forget the rousing sound of bagpipes and drums in full flow. It really lends a great deal of authenticity to the event, and makes it a memorable night for Scots and non-Scots alike. But how much do you actually know about the pipers and drummers who perform for us every year? Did you know there are World Champions in the ballroom every year? Did you know that this is often the only time they now play together?

We asked Stevie Brown about who the band are, where they come from, and most importantly, why do they come back year after year…


Most of us played together at Shotts and Dykehead Caledonia Pipe Band and have known each other for around 35 years. We live all over Scotland, and mostly having retired from competing now, we get together especially to come to Budapest.

It is an honour and a privilege to be invited to join you once again this year and we are delighted to congratulate the RBIF on the occasion of the 25th Burns Supper to raise funds for the Foundation and the worthy causes it supports.

We have been very fortunate, in the past, to have competed at the highest level, winning numerous titles, including multiple World Championships. We have been afforded the opportunity to travel the world, we’ve appeared on TV shows, met celebrities and made recordings, even earning a gold disc for a collaboration with traditional musicians from across Europe.


However, to be associated with the RBIF for around 20 years has provided us with the most gratifying and humbling experiences, not only entertaining guests at the Burns Supper, but actively engaging with the children who benefit from the charity work of the Foundation.


We have played for youngsters in hospital cancer wards, orphanages, schools and community centres and cannot overstate the effects these visits have had on us. We hope that we have left the children with even a fraction of the memories with which they have provided us.


Budapest has become a very special place for us and the friendships formed here will last for many years to come. We wish the RBIF continued success in all its ventures in the future and are eternally grateful to be acknowledged by the Foundation as the charity’s official pipers and drummers.

A huge thank you to all the helpers and sponsors that assisted with the 25th Annual Budapest Burns Supper at the Corinthia Budapest. Many people, companies and organisations support us in different ways, both financially and with products or services. Without their generous assistance the Burns Supper would not be the event it is.

The money raised from the gala will be put towards our charity projects in 2022, along with the kind donations that we have received as well.

Follow us and stay updated

Make sure you like the RBIF Facebook page or follow us on Instagram or Twitter to be sure of hearing all the details about next year’s event in good time, and to find out what projects the RBIF will be supporting throughout 2022.

The Robert Burns International Foundation (RBIF) is supported by the British Ambassador to Hungary and the Hungarian Ambassador to the UK. The Honorary President of the foundation is Sir Alex Ferguson, former manager of Manchester United football club. In the last 25 years the organisation has raised several hundred thousand euros to help sick and underprivileged children.

Contact: [email protected]

The RBIF has supported the Infant and Paediatric Department at the Szent Rafael Hospital in Zalaegerszeg for a number of years now, in collaboration with FirstMed Centers, as part of our SME Sponsorship Scheme.

In 2021, despite not being able to hold our normal Burns Supper in January, the Robert Burns International Foundation helped to fund KARL STORZ laparoscopic instruments for paediatric surgery, and an ARDO CALYPSO double plus breast pump.

In past decades, the paediatric surgery department of the Szent Rafael Hospital was only able to perform operations using traditional surgical techniques. In recent years, however, and following international trends, an increasing number of operations on children have been performed with minimally invasive techniques, which require special equipment.

The department is steadily building up a set of laparoscopic instruments that can be used for important diagnostic and therapeutic procedures. With the current donation, additional instruments were acquired to perform more complex abdominal procedures in a minimally invasive way, even on the smallest children. This means less pain, a faster recovery and, no less important, a more cosmetically favourable outcome.

The equipment purchased with the help of the RBIF has constituted a major step forward for paediatric surgery at the hospital.

The department is committed to the breastfeeding of newborns and premature babies. The electric breast pump is more practical and quicker to use than manual milking. It has 2 suction heads, allowing mothers to milk both breasts at the same time. This method not only cuts milking time in half, but also helps to increase milk production and maintain volume. The milking is carried out in a closed system, which is important from a hygiene point of view.

The Head of the Infant and Paediatric Department Dr. László Gárdos said

Our thanks goes to the Robert Burns International Foundation, for your donation of equipment to the children’s ward of the St. Rafael Hospital in Zala County, which has contributed to improving the quality of care and the recovery and physical and mental development of the infants and children cared for on the wards.