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.”