Celebrating Successes in Tanzania

“I have the audacity to believe that peoples everywhere can have three meals a day for their bodies, education and culture for their minds, and dignity, equality and freedom for their spirits.”

Dr. Martin Luther King, 1964

 

Gilchrist’s partnership with Nkoaranga Hospital’s Palliative Care and Hospice Program in Tanzania continues to deepen in the eighth year of our working together to benefit the sick and the dying in Tanzania.

We are also delighted to have an ever stronger relationship with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Tanzania’s Palliative Care Program, which provides educational and training support for Nkoaranga. It is the honor of Gilchrist to provide some modest financial support to further the ELCT’s work across the nation.

In April, we hosted our colleague and friend Dr. Paul Mmbando when he was a speaker at the National Hospice and Palliative Care Conference in Washington DC.

Dr. Mmbando is the Manager of the Palliative Care Program for the ELCT, providing educational support to 23 hospice and palliative care programs across the nation of Tanzania.  Paul has studied, trained, and spoken internationally, receiving his medical degree in Uganda, a master’s degree in South Africa, a fellowship in the U.S. and a postgraduate diploma in the United Kingdom.  Paul was instrumental in the passage in January 2016 of the National Palliative Care Policy for Tanzania.

atWaterfall9_forBlog
Dr. Paul Mmbando with Gilchrist’s Assistant Medical Director, Dr. Aaron Charles, as they stand in front of the koi pond in Gilchrist Center Towson’s gardens.

Much has been accomplished in Tanzania since 2004, and we are honored to have played a small part.

We celebrate these successes that Dr. Mmbando shared with us.  Since 2004,

  • 23 palliative care programs have been founded
  • Over 100 staff members have been trained
  • Over 800 community based volunteers have been trained
  • Over 26,000 patients are now served annually, compared to 500 patients in 2004
  • Thousands of patients who were in severe pain now have access to morphine
  • The national Palliative Care Policy was enacted in 2016

There is much that still needs to be done in Tanzania.  Addressing the issues of poverty, lack of food, lack of access to medication, funding for palliative care programs and new US partners for them, funding for the ELCT program, and academic research are priorities.

MemorialBlogDuring his visit, we took Paul to the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. memorial in Washington.  Paul marveled – “these quotes really could be about what we are trying to accomplish in Tanzania!”

We at Gilchrist heartily agree.

 “Make a career of humanity, commit yourself to the noble struggle for equal rights.  You will make a greater person of yourself, a greater nation of your country, and a finer world to live in.”

Dr. Martin Luther King, 1959

If you would like to contribute to Gilchrist’s Global Partnership, please do so here.

To date, donations to our Global Partnership have funded:

  • Toyota Land Cruiser outfitted to serve as an ambulance,
  • salary of the hospital’s first palliative care physician,
  • staff salaries,
  • volunteer stipends,
  • scholarships for children,
  • office expenses,
  • outreach expenses,
  • emergency housing repairs,
  • equipment for the Kids Club for children with HIV,
  • hospital stays for symptomatic patients,
  • and other needs.

 


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