With assistance from Bread and Water for Africa®, our partner organization in Cameroon, Hope Services, was able to construct a clinic in the city of Douala.
And with that project completed we are now on to our task of filling it with the medicines, medical supplies and equipment needed to serve the community.
“The prospective beneficiary community is highly expectant of its start-up and there is a high need for medical equipment,” reported Hope Services director Esther Ndichafah earlier this year.
We are working right now to raise the funds necessary to ship a 40-foot container full of these items in order to enable the people in the surrounding area who are in desperate need of health care services, and we need your help.
Health care, particularly for children and the impoverished, is practically non-existent and Esther reports that the main health challenges facing the country include endemic diseases including malaria, meningitis, cholera, Typhoid fever, and many others most Americans have never even heard of.
“HIV/AIDS also have a high prevalence rate with Douala among the top cities affected,” said Esther. “These diseases require health analysis that require good equipment.”
According to a recent report by the United Nation’s Children’s Fund, few of the poorest women in Cameroon have access to a doctor, nurse or midwife at their side when they need them most, and hundreds of women die every week due complications, while many more live with “debilitating” outcomes.
In addition, the lack of medical attention results in thousands of stillbirths each week, half of them being babies who were alive when labor began, and thousands more die before they are even just one-month-old.
“For far too many families, the sheer cost of childbirth can be catastrophic,” says UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore. “If a family cannot afford these costs, the consequences can even be fatal.
“When families cut corners to reduce maternal health care costs, both mothers and their babies suffer.”
The situation is particularly dire for girls who married before even turning 15 years old. In Cameroon today, more than 60 percent of girls between 20 and 24 have three or more children.
Working with Hope Services, as well as our partners in Sierra Leone, Ethiopia and elsewhere, we are doing what we can to help save infants and their young mothers from premature and preventable deaths.
The cost to gather the medicines and supplies, sort and ship them to Cameroon is not inexpensive. However, it is much cheaper than attempting to acquire them in Cameroon, a daunting task on its own. Using our status as a non-profit organization, the items are allowed into the country duty-free at a substantial cost savings.
Your gift of $25, $50 or even $100 will go a long way towards seeing that the future patients at Hope Services’ Douala clinic get the medicines and supplies they need to treat their illnesses, prevent them from getting sick in the first place, and undoubtedly save lives.
Hope Services has been providing free and extremely-low cost medical care to the most needy and vulnerable in Cameroon for 25 years through makeshift clinics and outreach programs. Now, thanks to people like you, the clinic is in sight of reaching its true potential.
“Our long term goal has been the extension of medical services in Douala for the benefit of the poor,” says Esther. “This project is a giant step into our long-term goal.”
Thanks to the support of African children through your generous gifts to Bread and Water for Africa®, we started funding the construction of a clinic/hospital in Douala about three years ago.
The clinic was supposed to open in May of 2018, but because of the election of the new president in Cameroon and some civil unrest in the north of the country, the opening was delayed.
Now, the clinic is finished and ready to start helping the people of this poor and disease filled country, but before the clinic can help Cameroonian children, we need to send a major shipment of medical supplies and equipment.
Our goal is to raise $20,000 to equip the clinic with medical supplies. Around 30 percent of Douala’s population lives in poverty, and the clinic will serve tens of thousands of mothers and children. They will receive life-lengthening and life-saving treatment there for years to come if we’re successful.
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Click here to support medical supplies for Cameroon.
Douala, Cameroon, may be the largest city in the country and its commercial and economic capital, but about 30 percent of the population lives in poverty which is a growing problem due to its steadily increasing population.
Unlike Cameroonians living in rural regions who can grow their own foods, residents of the city are at a disadvantage by living in the port city where there are not many jobs available to them.
Healthcare services for destitute children and families are dismal, and with a life expectancy at birth for infants born in 2012 of 54 years (compared with 78 years in the U.S.), the prospects for a long happy life for a child in Cameroon are dim.
But thanks to you there is good news for the impoverished thousands who need preventative care, or treatment for illness or injury who would otherwise live, or die, without.
For nearly three years, we have been working with our partner there, Hope Services Ministry International on the construction of a desperately-needed health clinic, according to Executive Director Bethelhem Tessema.
“I am pleased to report that this project is now in the final stages,” she announced recently. “The clinic will be fully operational in May, as soon as painting, clearing, and cleaning is completed.
“I look forward to the opening of this clinic.”
And no doubt also are the tens of thousands of future patients who will receive life-lengthening and life-saving treatment there for years to come.
To learn more about the healthcare programs we support in Cameroon, Ethiopia, Kenya, Sierra Leone and Zambia please visit https://www.africanrelief.org/project/health-care/.
Earlier this year, we ran pipes from a clean water source about two miles away from the Kebeneti SDA Dispensary in Kericho, Kenya so it would no longer have to rely on rainwater collected in storage tanks and now have access to all the water they need for patients, staff, and to keep the facility clean.
However, what remained lacking was hot water, meaning that they had to boil water for sterilization, washing, and bathing.
The good news for the clinic, located in the highlands west of Rift Valley about 25 miles from the equator, is that sunshine is abundant throughout the year.
To remedy that situation, this fall, with the continued generosity of our supporters, we took the next step by installing a solar water heating system on the roofs of buildings on the clinic compound to provide hot water for doctors and staff to use when showering and washing their hands, and also to aid in keeping the dispensary more sanitary.
And, as noted by dispensary manager Titus Korir, “Solar power is a cheap source of energy which can be sustained for a long time.”